The Australian Rail Track Corporation (ARTC) has appointed Australian owned contractor Martinus as the preferred contractor for the delivery of the Rail Corridor Program for Inland Rail sections in New South Wales and Southern Queensland.

The collaborative framework agreement between the ARTC and Martinus includes approximately 570 kilometres of railway between Narromine and Moree in New South Wales and North Star (New South Wales) to Gowrie in Queensland taking in the project’s largest greenfield sections.

ARTC Inland Rail Interim Chief Executive Rebecca Pickering said the contract is another milestone for Inland Rail, which will be a catalyst for regional employment and economic opportunity.

“Inland Rail is a game changer for regional Australia. It will transform how we move goods around Australia, better link businesses to markets and generate new opportunities for industries and regions,” Mrs Pickering said.

“We’ve already committed more than 600 contracts to businesses in Queensland and nearly 700 in New South Wales worth more than $1.9 billion across the two states, and this agreement will create even more economic stimulus as the country recovers from the impacts of the pandemic,” she said.

“Both sides of the border will benefit significantly from Inland Rail with more than 11,800 direct and indirect jobs in Queensland and 7500 in New South Wales expected at the peak of construction in 2023-24.

“As an Australian owned and operated business, the appointment of Martinus means all the skills, investment, and knowledge gained as a result of this contract will remain in Australia.

“Martinus will employ approximately 600 people at the peak of this work – these are jobs that Inland Rail is directly supporting.”

Martinus Chief Executive and Founder Treaven Martinus said the award of works marks a significant step for the Australian owned contractor and is keen to work with local business and suppliers to help deliver this generational project hand-in-hand with ARTC.

“As an Australian owned business, we understand the importance of supporting local and are committed to playing a key role in helping build and support regional businesses,” Mr Martinus said.

“We have a long history of local spending - last year 84 per cent of our spend was with small Australian-owned businesses. We have seen firsthand the benefits of working with local suppliers and manufacturers to service many of our projects and our approach remains the same here.”

“Martinus are known in the industry as a new age civil and rail contractor focussed on providing development and growth pathways to better service clients through successful delivery of complex projects.

“We’d like to thank ARTC for providing an Australian owned contractor the opportunity to deliver these critical works, all the while providing our company a pathway to become a tier one contractor, creating plenty of opportunities, for our growing team of more than 1000, in New South Wales and Queensland.”

“For the past 16 years we have delivered various projects for ARTC, we are thrilled to continue our strong relationship and look forward to delivering this nation building project together.”

Mrs Pickering said the appointment of the Preferred Proponent for the Rail Corridor Program – the role of laying ballast, sleepers and track - will allow accelerated investment and local opportunities to regional New South Wales and Queensland.

“The rail corridor program is a key component of the broader works within the Border to Gowrie, North Star to Border, Narromine to Narrabri and a part of the Narrabri to North Star sections of Inland Rail,” she said.

“The announcement is a crucial part of the Inland Rail project, as it forms the delivery of the two largest greenfield sections of the railway and the previous ‘missing link’ rail corridor between Queensland and New South Wales, where no rail line has existed previously.

“Major construction on these sections will not start until statutory approvals have been received from the New South Wales, Queensland and Australian governments, but the appointment of a preferred proponent is a huge step forward for the project.

“Martinus will now work closely with ARTC to develop strategies to manage supply and logistics for large quantities of long-lead time construction materials.

“These materials will include almost a million concrete sleepers, approximately 80,000 tonnes of steel rail and 1.7 million tonnes of ballast.

“The work will involve the delivery of above-ground works, which includes track construction, rail welding, transportation of materials, and the installation and commissioning of level crossings.

“This appointment at this time also allows Martinus to maximise local jobs and procurement, and they will soon be seeking partnerships with businesses and skilled operators that can support its delivery.”

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