Delivering critical phase of Port of Melbourne’s Rail Transformation

Seymour Whyte has been engaged by Port of Melbourne to develop new rail infrastructure at the port, including a new rail terminal interfacing with the container terminal at Swanson Dock East.

John Kirkwood, Seymour Whyte Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer, said the contract with Port of Melbourne recognises Seymour Whyte’s extensive experience in collaborative contracting.

“We are delighted to have entered into an early contractor involvement (ECI) contract with Port of Melbourne earlier this year and now the delivery contract of this important Port Rail Transformation Project,” Mr Kirkwood said.

Mr Kirkwood credits the team for ‘a smarter way to more’ demonstrating Seymour Whyte’s capabilities and smarter partnerships approach to deliver the port’s rail project, including opportunities to reuse and recycle, diverting materials from waste streams.

“We have worked collaboratively with Port of Melbourne to develop the preferred transport infrastructure engineering solution, seeking to understand and address the challenges and priorities for the port’s future”.

Seymour Whyte participated in a competitive expression of interest and tender stage to be selected to work in partnership with Port of Melbourne and design-partner WSP to deliver the Port Rail Transformation Project.

Courtney Hoops, Seymour Whyte General Manager for Victoria, Tasmania and South Australia, welcomed the opportunity to work with new client, Port of Melbourne, and expand our offering in Victoria, which includes transport and water infrastructure project delivery.

Mr Hoops said, “We look forward to working with Port of Melbourne to deliver this exciting project that will transform freight movement and efficiency within Australia’s largest container and general cargo port.”

“We are committed to minimising impacts and delivering best outcomes for our stakeholders. The challenges of a 24/7/365 operational environment will be managed through close coordination and interface management with project stakeholders – by continuing to work with them to ensure that port operations are maintained throughout the project,” he said.

Environmental initiatives to be explored include:

  • a water treatment system to treat contaminated ground water
  • recycling all asphalt and concrete
  • demolition works anticipated to achieve an 80%+ recycle rate
  • assessment of the reuse of approximately 33,000m3 of soil on-site to reduce the amount of new material used on-site.

The Port Rail Transformation Project is the cornerstone of Port of Melbourne’s new rail infrastructure, ensuring and supporting trade growth strategy to meet Victoria’s and southeast Australia’s freight needs.

The port’s new rail infrastructure will include:

  • A new Coode Road rail terminal interfacing with the Swanson Dock East International Container Terminal. The rail terminal will include two new rail sidings each that can handle 600 metre long trains.
  • A new road to facilitate the uninterrupted movement of containers. The new road will provide a continued east/west connection within the Swanson Dock Precinct without trucks needing to exit to Footscray Road replacing the section of Coode Road which will be closed to construct the above rail terminal.
  • Modifications to the Swanson precinct common user sidings to accommodate 600 metre long trains.
  • A new track linking the Swanson and Appleton lead tracks to allow additional flexibility for trains to move within the port precinct.
  • Upgrades to the Swanson lead track.

Construction work is expected from October 2021 until 2023.