Gawler line electrification sparks into life

The much-anticipated Gawler Rail Electrification Project is set to spark into life after the Marshall Liberal Government signed-off on Stage 2 of the major $615 million project.

The State Government has approved extending its existing contract with construction company Lendlease, already contracted to deliver Stage 1 (Adelaide to Salisbury), to include Stage 2 works from Salisbury to Gawler.

Once complete, by late 2020, the “clean, green’’ electrified line will run 78.1 kilometres and 50 stations along the rail corridor from Gawler through Adelaide all the way to Seaford.

Federal Minister for Urban Infrastructure and Cities Paul Fletcher said the Turnbull and Marshall Governments were working closely to deliver this important project, with the Turnbull Government committing $220 million.

“This project will improve travel times for Adelaide’s commuters, while supporting population growth in the region,” Mr Fletcher said.

“The Turnbull Government is committed to tackling congestion and getting South Australians where they need to be sooner and safer - whether it be a parent trying to drop the kids off at school on time or a tradie trying to get to five jobs in a day rather than three.”

Premier Steven Marshall said that the new State Government has moved quickly to ensure the highly anticipated Gawler line electrification project becomes a reality as soon as possible.

“The Gawler line is one of Adelaide’s busiest, enabling around five million passenger journeys each year and that number has been steadily increasing for the past decade,” Premier Marshall said.

“This major project will deliver faster, safer and more reliable rail services for the northern suburbs which, we hope, will encourage more people to leave the car at home and take public transport.”

Minister for Transport, Infrastructure and Local Government Stephan Knoll said Lendlease commenced detailed design works for the Adelaide to Salisbury section earlier this year and would now incorporate the full line to Gawler.

The works will support approximately 135 jobs a year during construction - with a focus on local skills and Australian materials – and include the acquisition of 15 additional three-car electric trains and improved track safety.

“In addition to the new clean and green high-performance trains, we are delivering a superior signalling system with advanced Automatic Track Protection,’’ Minister Knoll said.

“The scope of works also include the electrification of the Dry Creek Railcar Depot, a new electricity feeder station at Kilburn, pedestrian level-crossing enhancements and fencing along the rail corridor for improved safety.”

Liberal Senator for South Australia Anne Ruston said the Gawler project was one of several for South Australia funded in the Turnbull Government’s May budget, which committed $1.8 billion to new major projects across the state.

“This project is a great example of how the Turnbull Government’s $5.2 billion commitment to road and rail projects across our state is supporting the South Australian economy and creating jobs, as well as easing congestion,” Senator Ruston said.

The project is joint funded, with the State Government contributing $395m and the Commonwealth, $220m.