AUSTRALIAN manufacturer Downer Rail has been selected as the preferred supplier for the Queensland Train Manufacturing Programme (QTMP), which includes the supply of 65 new EMUs built at a new plant in the state.

The trains will be deployed on the Cross River Rail project in Brisbane and to boost passenger services on the state’s southeastern network ahead of the 2032 Brisbane Olympic and Paralympic Games.

Under the contract, Downer will:

  • design, manufacture and commission 65 six-car EMUs
  • design, construct and commission a purpose-built train manufacturing facility at Torbanlea, 25km north of Maryborough
  • design, construct and commission a maintenance facility and stabling yards at Ormeau in the Gold Coast region
  • design and build two training simulators, and
  • maintain the new rolling stock fleet, simulators and the Ormeau maintenance facility for an initial term of 15 years and a maximum term of 35 years.

The price of the package will be finalised when the contract is signed, which is expected in the coming months.

The complete QTMP, which includes construction of new rail infrastructure in the southeast of the state, is budgeted at $A 7.1bn. The Queensland state government allocated $A 265m towards the train procurement element of QTMP in its budget announcement last June.

Alstom, CAF and Downer were shortlisted for a contract to supply 20 trains in July 2021. However, Queensland premier, Ms Annastacia Palaszczuk, confirmed on announcing the deal this week the need for an additional 45 trains. The new fleet will be equipped with ETCS and the first trains are expected to enter service in 2026.

Meanwhile, work is underway to refurbish the fleet of 75 New Generation Rollingstock (NGR) EMUs supplied by Bombardier, and which began to enter service in 2017, to make them compliant with state accessibility legislation. Bombardier (now Alstom) was awarded a $A 361m contract in April 2019 to undertake the programme , which at the time was scheduled to be completed in 2024. Hitachi is also equipping the fleet with ETCS.

For detailed data on fleet orders in Australia, subscribe to IRJ Pro.