Ararat Junction
Signaling Project

Murray Basin Rail Project — Regional Rail Revival $700M+

The Ararat Junction Signalling Project -as part of Murray Basin Rail Project- was managed by V/Line and focused on a number of key deliverables. This included:

  • The upgrade of lines in the Murray Basin from broad-gauge to standard-gauge.
  • The restoration and upgrade of the existing standard-gauge line between Ararat and Maryborough providing a connection onto the ARTC mainline toward Melbourne and retaining access to the Ararat Yard.
  • The upgrade of lines in the Murray Basin from 19-tonne axle load to 21-tonne axle loads; and
  • The upgrade of the Ouyen to Murrayville line from broad-gauge to standard-gauge with axle loading of 19 tonnes per axle.

Track and signalling modifications were made at Ararat to provide a direct standard-gauge connection from Maryborough to the ARTC standard-gauge mainline with access toward Maroona, and the Murray Basin.

The signalling scope of the project included developing 23 signalling and CSR design packages, 46km of cabling, 6 new signals, modifying 3 existing signals, new catchpoint, 8 new location boxes, new SER, upgrading signalling in 5 level crossings and required civil, track and CSR works for both the V/Line and ARTC lines.

Our role in the Project

Our nominated T&S team members (Project Engineers) have been involved in this project in late 2022 to help with the delivery of the project after multiple delays in the construction of the project. Through our team of Subject Matter Experts and Project Management expertise, T&S has proven experience in offering specialized advice, analysis, and technical guidance across Track, CSR and Signalling of Rail Systems.

  • The T&S Team members led the project delivery for V/Line with a focus on achieving optimal project and network outcomes, while also meeting V/Line’s accreditation and technical standards.
  • Their responsibilities include managing all site construction activities and providing technical advice to enable V/Line to complete the construction, test and commissioning as per the program.
  • This includes management of requirements, construction workpacks, assurance, risk, occupations and disruptions in compliance with V/Line Works Readiness, testing & commissioning, interfacing, integration, governance, commercial negotiations, scope, budget, schedule and procurement.
  • Areas of expertise cover project management, project engineering, rail signalling, risk management, commercial management, management of specialist consultants and designers, V/Line & ARTC processes as well as rail specific knowledge in permanent way / track, civil and drainage, Combined Services Route, signalling, signalling power, train control system, rollingstock, Australian standards etc.

Project Challenges & Achievements

The Ararat Junction Project has undergone several phases from 2017 to 2021, but its completion was hindered by its complexity.

The project involved two RTOs with different Safety Management Systems, processes, and design standards, which resulted in scope creep over time. Additionally, COVID lockdowns had a negative impact on productivity and procurement. Despite these setbacks, the project was still required to be finished by the end of 2023.

To achieve this goal, the T&S representatives managed the interfaces with various stakeholders and carefully monitored the contractors’ scope, program, and requirements. With their expertise, the T&S representatives were able to successfully meet milestones and mitigate risks.

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