Australian Rail Track Corporation

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Australian Rail Track Corporation
Statutory corporation
Founded 1 July 1998
Headquarters Mile End, South Australia
Area served
All mainland Australian states
Key people
Warren Truss (Chairman)
John Fullerton (CEO)
Revenue Increase A$828.6 million (2014/15)[1]
Increase A$134.6 million (2014/15)[1]
Total assets A$3.61 billion[1]
Number of employees
Parent Government of Australia

The Australian Rail Track Corporation (ARTC) is a Government of Australia owned statutory corporation, established in July 1998, that manages most of Australia's interstate rail network.[2][3]


ARTC Asset Management South and West offices in Wagga Wagga

In November 1996, the Federal Government announced a major rail reform package that included the sale of government-owned train operators Australian National and National Rail, and the establishment of the ARTC to manage the sections of the interstate rail network which had been controlled by the two former organisations.

The ARTC was incorporated in February 1998, with operations starting in July 1998 when the lines managed by Australian National's Track Australia were transferred to it.[4][5][6] These were the lines from Kalgoorlie to Port Augusta, Tarcoola to Alice Springs, Port Augusta to Whyalla, Adelaide to Broken Hill, Adelaide to Serviceton, and the Outer Harbor line in Adelaide.[4]

In 2000, the Tarcoola to Alice Springs line was leased to the Asia Pacific Transport Consortium as part of the project to extend the line to Darwin.[7]


In 1999, the ARTC signed a five-year deal with VicTrack, the rail manager for the Victorian government, to lease the standard gauge North East line from Albury to Melbourne and the Western standard gauge line from Melbourne to Serviceton.[4] This was later extended for another 10 years, and in May 2008 for another 45 years.[8][9]

As part of the lease extension, the run-down and underutilised broad-gauge line from Seymour to Albury, that paralleled the standard gauge line, was leased to the ARTC and converted to standard gauge.[10] Included was construction of the five-kilometre Wodonga Rail Bypass which eliminated 11 level crossings in that city.[11]

In March 2009, the Portland line from Maroona to Portland would be leased to the ARTC for 50 years, with $15 million to be invested in the line.[12][13][14]

Western Australia[edit]

In 2001, the ARTC was granted rights for 15 years to sell access between Kalgoorlie and Kwinana, Perth, to interstate rail operators under a wholesale access agreement with the West Australian track-owner Arc Infrastructure.[7]

New South Wales[edit]

In September 2004, the Government of New South Wales-owned RailCorp leased its interstate and Hunter Valley lines to the ARTC for 60 years.[15][16][17] The lines covered by the lease are:

As part of this agreement the ARTC agreed to the following investment programmes:[17]

The Rail Infrastructure Corporation also contracted operational responsibility of the remainder of its country branch lines to the ARTC from September 2004.[20] From January 2012 this was transferred to the John Holland Group.[16][21][22]

In July 2011, responsibility for the Werris Creek to North Star line was transferred from the Country Rail Infrastructure Authority to the ARTC.[23]

In August 2012, the Government of New South Wales owned RailCorp leased its Metropolitan Goods line from Port Botany to Sefton to the ARTC for 50 years.[24][25]


In January 2010, the Government of Queensland leased its standard gauge line from Border Loop on the New South Wales border to Acacia Ridge, Brisbane to the ARTC for 60 years.[26]

In February 2014, the Federal and Queensland governments agreed to investigate further incorporating Queensland into the national rail network.[27] This ultimately did not proceed.


The ARTC does not operate any trains, but provides and maintains the infrastructure for train operators to run on. The tracks controlled by the ARTC are located in five states, and were previously run by six separate state railways in an uncoordinated fashion that gave an advantage to road transport. By combining the infrastructure under one corporation it was expected that a more integrated and coordinated one-stop-shop would be created. It provides its own reporting numbers to trains that operate on its network.

The ARTC does not control any of the narrow gauge track in Queensland or South Australia, nor broad gauge track in Victoria. However it does control the Albion to Jacana freight line which has been partially converted to dual gauge for use as a passing lane, but is considered a main line on the broad gauge network.

Owned corridors[edit]

Leased corridors[edit]


  1. ^ a b c d "2015 Annual Report" (PDF). Australian Rail Track Corporation. Australian Rail Track Corporation. Retrieved 12 March 2016. 
  2. ^ "About ARTC". Australian Rail Track Corporation. Retrieved 14 November 2012. 
  3. ^ "About Defined Interstate Rail Network". Australian Rail Track Corporation. Retrieved 14 November 2012. 
  4. ^ a b c Annual Report 30 June 1999 Australian Rail Track Corporation
  5. ^ Background – Organisation of Australia's Railways Department of Infrastructure and Transport
  6. ^ "ARTC History". Australian Rail Track Corporation. Retrieved 6 July 2012. 
  7. ^ a b Annual Report 30 June 2001 Australian Rail Track Corporation
  8. ^ Historic Deal Heralds New Rail Infrastructure Investment in Victoria Australian Rail Track Corporation 30 May 2008
  9. ^ Annual Report 30 June 2008 Australian Rail Track Corporation
  10. ^ "Full steam ahead" ABC News 30 May 2008
  11. ^ "V/Line returns after North East Rail Revitalisation", Railway Gazette International, 29 June 2011, archived from the original on 29 December 2013 
  12. ^ Future of Portland to Maroona rail line secured Port of Portland 16 July 2008
  13. ^ "Rail track upgrade announced for Portland" ABC News 16 July 2008
  14. ^ V/Line Weekly Operational Notice No 11/2009
  15. ^ Memorandum between The Commonwealth of Australia & The State of New South Wales & Australian Rail Track Corporation Limited Australian Rail Track Corporation
  16. ^ a b The Agreement in Summary (PDF), Australian Rail Track Corporation 
  17. ^ a b Annual Report 2003–04 (PDF), Australian Rail Track Corporation, 30 June 2004, archived from the original (PDF) on 11 April 2013 
  18. ^ Southern Sydney Freight Line Project Australian Rail Track Corporation
  19. ^ New Line to Reduce Congestion on Sydney Rail Network Opens Australian Rail Track Corporation 21 January 2013
  20. ^ Annual Report 30 June 2005 Australian Rail Track Corporation
  21. ^ John Holland to manage NSW regional rail Rail Express 8 December 2010
  22. ^ Country Rail Network John Holland
  23. ^ Annual Report 30 June 2011 Australian Rail Track Corporation
  24. ^ ATRC & Transport for New South Wales sign historic agreement to boost rail freight in NSW Australian Track Access Corporation 5 August 2012
  25. ^ the ARTC gains control of Sydney Metropolitan Freight Network Rail Express 15 August 2012
  26. ^ Queensland standard gauge rail line – leased to ARTC Australian Rail Track Corporation 15 January 2010
  27. ^ Truss, Warren; Emerson, Scott (25 February 2014). "ARTC to Investigate Incorporating Queensland into National Rail Network" (Press release). Archived from the original on 25 February 2014.