Oct 15, 2020

Labor in rail manufacturing pledge for Rocky

Labor in rail manufacturing pledge for Rocky

A plan to revitalise Rockhampton’s rail manufacturing industry has been outlined as part of State Labor’s re-election campaign.

It follows a $1 billion pipeline of train building work announced in Maryborough this week – including $600 million to build 20 new Queensland trains, supporting 690 new jobs.

Local Labor MP Barry O’Rourke said the pathway to revitalising local rail manufacturing in Rockhampton included:

  • Securing land at the old Aurizon workshops
  • Using that land to support a rail maintenance, manufacturing and logistics centre
  • Ensuring Rockhampton manufactured components of the new trains, such as electrical looming or fibreglass forming, leveraging local supply chains

Labor Member for Keppel Brittany Lauga said the new facility in Rockhampton would complement the QR maintenance site in Gracemere where electric tilt trains were maintained.

“Recently a new shed for electric testing has been completed there,” Ms Lauga said.

“Now we’re moving ahead with fresh plans for more local manufacturing and employment.”

Elsewhere in Queensland, rail industry supply chains will also be strengthened to support smaller suppliers and jobs across the state, including in Cairns, Townsville and Redbank.

Minister for Transport Mark Bailey said the commitment will bolster Queensland’s ability to build and maintain more rollingstock and rail infrastructure, creating long term stable jobs for Queenslanders.

The Rockhampton announcement adds to other Labor commitments to regional rail jobs, including:

  • growing work at the Redbank workshops in Ipswich
  • $2.5 million invested to upgrade the QR Portsmith rail maintenance facility
  • $730,000 invested to build a new rail maintenance workshop in Gracemere and purchase a recovery truck to service regional rail
  • maintaining QR’s maintenance depots in Townsville, supporting 234 local jobs