Mowlem plc



Ref:                 003     

Date:                17 October 2003

Embargo:         Immediate release
Media Contact:            Victoria Ferrier or Sarah Burry-Hayes on 0208 957 7236

Mowlem completes Alice Springs to Darwin rail link ahead of schedule

Barclay Mowlem, international arm of Mowlem plc and a joint venture partner of ADrail, has recently completed trackwork for the 1,420 km Alice Springs to Darwin Railway project.

Work on the £430m line, began in May 2001 and the project is scheduled for completion on 31 October this year, five months ahead of schedule.

As well as constructing the track, the flagship project also involved upgrading the existing line from Tarcoola to Alice Springs and freight handling facilities at the Port in Darwin.

The much needed rail link, connecting Darwin with the south of the country has created a freight landbridge to Asia and the rest of the world. It is estimated that the delivery of freight from Adelaide to major Asian centres such as Tokyo will be reduced by 11 days, bringing major commercial gains to the region.

In addition, there will be a passenger service running between Adelaide and Darwin, via Alice Springs - the date of the inaugural Freight train is on 15 January 2004; and the first passenger train is on 1 February 2004.

Work on the line comprised 15 million cubic metres of earthworks, 1,500 culverts, 2.9 million tonnes of ballast, 2 million sleepers, 8 million sleeper fastenings and over 140,000 tonnes of rail. The project also involved constructing more than 100 bridges and employing over 1,300 people.

The Alice Springs to Darwin railway line is one of the most exciting civil engineering projects to be undertaken in Australia and has been a massive logistical exercise.

“Barclay Mowlem is proud to have been a part of this project, which will bring about increased regional investment and economic growth for Australia,” said Barclay Mowlem’s Rail Group General Manager, Bill Killinger.

“At long last, the north and south of Australia is connected to the rest of the world through this massive infrastructure project, which will bring about significant benefits to Australian business,” he said.

Barclay Mowlem is also a sponsor shareholder of Asia Pacific Transport consortium, and will have ongoing involvement in the ownership, operation and maintenance of the Railway.