Melbourne–Adelaide rail corridor

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Melbourne–Adelaide rail corridor
LocaleVictoria and South Australia
PredecessorVictorian Railways and South Australian Railways
Track gauge1,435 mm (4 ft 8+12 in) standard gauge
Previous gaugeconverted from 1,600 mm (5 ft 3 in)

The Melbourne–Adelaide rail corridor is an 828 kilometres (514 mi)standard-gauge railway corridor that runs between the cities of Melbourne, Victoria and Adelaide, South Australia.[1] Most of the current traffic is freight, though the only named and perhaps best known regular train is the twice-weekly passenger service The Overland, operated by Great Southern Rail.


In the second half of the nineteenth century, the Victorian Railways and South Australian Railways broad gauge networks were extended. The South Australian main line, the Adelaide-Wolseley line, was connected to the Victorian system at Serviceton in 1887. This was the first single gauge inter-colonial link in Australia.[2]

Conversion to standard gauge and rerouting[edit]

In 1983, studies by VicRail and Australian National suggested figures of about $400 million to construct a standard-gauge link. Various routes were considered, including via Serviceton and Ararat, and via Pinnaroo, Ouyen and Maryborough.[3]

In 1995, the line was converted to standard gauge, under the One Nation program and rerouted between Melbourne and Ararat in Victoria, to run on the line via North Shore and Cressy.[4]

Track and gauge[edit]

The line is single track the entire route with the exception of a short dual gauge section near Melbourne, and a number of 1,500–1,600 m (4,900–5,200 ft) passing loops every 15–45 km (9.3–28.0 mi).

Some branches have also been converted to standard gauge.


  1. ^ "AusLink Network Corridors". Archived from the original on 19 July 2008. Retrieved 29 March 2008.
  2. ^ "ARHS Railway Museum: History 1839 – 1900". Archived from the original on 29 September 2009. Retrieved 29 March 2008.
  3. ^ "General News". Newsrail. Australian Railway Historical Society. February 1983. p. 19.
  4. ^ "ARHS Railway Museum: History 1950 – now". Archived from the original on 8 February 2007. Retrieved 29 March 2008.


  • Avery, Rod (2006). Freight Across the Nation: The Australian Superfreighter Experience. Brisbane: Copyright Publishing Co. ISBN 1876344474.

Coordinates: 36°22′26″S 140°57′54″E / 36.373951°S 140.965087°E / -36.373951; 140.965087