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THE Australian Rail Track Corporation has awarded over $30 million worth of contracts in Queensland for engineering and environmental investigations for the Toowoomba to Brisbane section of the project.
ARTC Inland Rail programme delivery director Simon Thomas said the information gathered would complement extensive community engagement being undertaken by ARTC.
"It's a 360 approach - the engineering, environmental studies and community feedback inform each other so that we can build the best possible rail line," he said.
One of the proposed routes put forward by ARTC.
"We are at the beginning of a lengthy design process for Inland Rail in Queensland. These contracts allow us to progress an important piece of the puzzle with environmental studies from Toowoomba down through the Lockyer Valley, Beaudesert and into Brisbane at Acacia Ridge and Bromelton.
"This will help us understand more about the local geography, hydrology, flora and fauna, as well as air quality, noise and social factors, laying the groundwork for more detailed design work.
"Throughout this process we will continue to work very closely with communities, councils and landowners to gather their feedback and feed that into the design."
The Kagaru to Acacia Ridge and Bromelton contract, worth about $3.5 million, was awarded to Hatch Pty Ltd.
FULL STEAM: John Dornbusch, Interlink SQ Chairman (left) and TRC Mayor Paul Antonio were both pleased with the Federal Government commitment to the inland rail network earlier in the year.Nev Madsen
The contract for the three projects from Gowrie through to Kagaru, valued at approximately $28 million, was awarded to the Future Freight Joint Venture, a joint venture between Aecom and Aurecon.
Mr Thomas said the three Gowrie to Kagaru projects would be delivered through a Public Private Partnership.
"This is the most technically complex section of Inland Rail requiring major tunnelling through the Toowoomba ranges," he said.
"Developing the PPP is one of ARTC's major areas of focus."
This article first appeared on www.thechronicle.com.au
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