Inland Rail and east-west Transcontinental Railway lines at Parkes will soon connect

Where the east-west rail line (Sydney to Perth) and the Inland Rail line (Melbourne to Brisbane) will soon meet, there is Parkes.

And Pacific National CEO Dean Dalla Valle is thrilled to see that connection gaining momentum and the Australian Rail Track Corporation (ARTC) moving ahead with its construction via the company's multi-million dollar Parkes Logistics Terminal.

The connections or turnouts, as they are called, to the terminal will be completed by the end of August this year, weather permitting.

ARTC is the infrastructure manager for both Inland Rail and the Transcontinental Railway (Sydney to Perth) and has engaged Martinus Rail to construct the turnouts.

"Once fully operational, Pacific National's Parkes Logistics Terminal will consolidate more than 450,000 cargo containers each year in the heart of regional NSW; many to be hauled on the Inland Rail between the ports of Melbourne and Brisbane," Mr Dalla Valle said.

"In the future, Parkes will be akin to the major freight and logistics hub of Memphis in the interior of the United States."


Pacific National owns 365-hectares at Parkes - or "Memphis Down Under" as the company calls it - with the logistics terminal that's currently under major construction, located within Parkes' National Logistics Hub.

Mr Dalla Valle said 1800-metre freight trains double-stacked with cargo containers are expected to be hauling from their terminal to Perth later this year.

"Connecting Inland Rail to the Transcontinental Railway via Pacific National's Parkes Logistics Terminal is imperative to help shift freight volumes from road to rail," he said.

"Australians want real trains, not road trains hauling big volumes of freight."

The Transcontinental Railway runs to Port Augusta in South Australia, where it joins the Trans-Australian Railway stretching across the vast Nullarbor Plain to Kalgoorlie in Western Australia.


Mr Dalla Valle said connecting major intermodal import/export terminals - where trains and trucks meet - to the ARTC-managed network is critical to help secure more freight volumes on rail.

"Australia's rail freight industry will only grow and prosper if below-rail managers like ARTC and above-rail operators like Pacific National work together to help shift more container and bulk volumes from road to rail," he said.

"Hauling containers and bulk commodities like grain and steel by rail over long distances is safe, green and efficient - rail freight is on the right side of every debate.

"For every tonne of freight hauled a kilometre, road freight produces 16 times more carbon pollution and 14 times greater accident costs than rail freight.

"A single 1,800-metre freight train hauling containers is equivalent to removing 70 B-double trucks or 50 B-triple trucks from our roads."