Publication Details

Laird, Philip G., 2008, East coast mainline rail track: options for 2014, in CORE2008: Rail - The Core of Integrated Transport, Conference on Railway Engineering, Perth, Railway Technical Society of Australasia : Engineers Australia, 357-367.


The alignment of the track linking Melbourne, Sydney, Brisbane and Cairns is outlined, along with the current North - South interstate rail upgrade, and the former Queensland MainLine Upgrade. Summaries are given of the 2006 - 07 draft AusLink Corridor Strategies for each corridor along with the ongoing upgrading of the Hume, Pacific and Bruce Highways. Comment is made on track straightening and other upgrading options for each corridor. Such upgrades during 2009 - 2014 would lower transport costs and assist rail to reach a target of 50 per cent mode share on the East Coast (as opposed to less than 12 per cent on the North - South corridor and 25 per cent on the Queensland North Coast line). In turn, this would deliver by 2014, estimated savings in diesel use of 185 million litres per annum along with reductions of greenhouse gas emissions (nearly 500,000 tonnes CO2e pa) and external costs ($325m pa).