By Neil Walker, Exports Director, Railway Industry Association:
The UK and Australian rail industries have often worked together in partnership. In March 2019, the UK’s Railway Industry Association (RIA) and the Australasian Railway Association (ARA) announced a new partnership at a reception hosted by the British Consul-General in Australia, as part of a UK rail trade delegation visit of 12 UK companies to the region. The new partnership will help cement the already positive relationship we have with the Australasian rail industry, maximising the potential of both industries and our respective member companies.
Both countries have much to offer the global rail market and RIA members also list Australia as a priority market.
With Australia’s increasing population and economic growth, we have seen Australia’s State and Federal Governments announcing high levels of spend on infrastructure and rail projects over the next decade, as they understand the power of the sector to move goods and people quickly and efficiently in a sustainable manner, while helping to cut congestion on the roads.
RIA, along with a number of companies from the UK rail sector, has been forming UK Pavilions at AusRail Plus exhibitions over the past few years and are pleased to exhibit in Sydney again this December.
We would be delighted to welcome any visitors to the UK Pavilion at Ausrail Plus 2019, stand number 95.
The inaugural Long Island Rail Road (LIRR) train arrived into Grand Central Madison, Manhattan, on 25 January.
Work has begun on the expansion of the West Midlands Metro depot, which includes extended and updated workshop and maintenance facilities.
Network Rail is upgrading almost three miles of railway tracks to improve the reliability of trains running through Scarborough.
Alstom has unveiled two new trainsets for the Hauts-de-France Region: the Omneo Premium and the Regio 2N equipped with ERTMS.
The first of Transport for Wales’ (TfW) new fleet of trains has been officially launched at a ceremony at Llandudno railway station.
The Eurostar Group, an alliance of Thalys and Eurostar, has marked a new milestone with the unveiling of its new brand.
Progress is being made towards Network Rail’s goal to upgrade the UK railway’s ageing telecoms infrastructure.
Aargau Verkehr has ordered five low-floor ABe 4/8 Saphir II trains for the Wynental and Suhrentalbahn (WSB) railway in Aargau, Switzerland.
Estonian railway operator Eesti Liinirongid (Elron) has taken up the option for a further 10 electric trains from Škoda Group.
Talgo has signed an agreement with LE TRAIN to develop a fleet of high-speed trains based on its Avril platform.
STM has announced that over 565 million CAD is being invested to equip the Montréal Metro with a new train control system.
FS Italiane has announced that new high-speed Trenitalia rail services between Rome and Milan commenced service on 23 January.
The first five-metre-tall V-shaped pier for the Curzon No. 3 Viaduct into HS2's Curzon Street Station in Birmingham has been installed.
National Express Rail has been awarded the contract to operate the German RE1 and RE11 Rhein-Ruhr-Express (RRX) lines up to 2033.
Freight railroad operator, BNSF has released a 3.96bn USD capital investment plan for 2023, which focusses on improving its core network.
The new four-car Moravia trainset has entered trial operation on the S2 line from Brno to Letovice in South Moravia.
Amtrak has received submissions from 10 manufacturers regarding replacement railcars for its overnight routes.
Varamis Rail has collaborated with Network Rail to launch a 'zero-carbon freight service' between Scotland and the Midlands.
New funding has been announced for Network Rail to deliver transformational rail projects in the South West of England.
Metrolinx has announced that tunnelling is now underway on Scarborough’s 7.8-km subway extension in Toronto, Canada.
A memorandum of understanding (MoU) has been signed to promote and develop high-speed rail projects across North-East Europe.
Stadler has won the contract to supply eight four-car FLIRT3 XL vehicles for use on the Rheingau Express (RE) lines in Germany.
Île-de-France Mobilités has announced that the last of 73 Regio 2N trains to equip line N has arrived at Gare Montparnasse in Paris.
Renfe has commenced on-route testing of its AVE high-speed trains that will operate between Spain and France.
Škoda has received an order for nine sleeping coaches and eight freight wagons for cars from Finnish state railway company VR Group.
Liverpool City Region’s new fleet of publicly-owned trains could enter service as soon as 23 January, the city mayor has announced.
RATP Dev has been awarded a one-year Early Operator Assistance contract for the Belgrade automated metro system.
VR Sweden has renewed a contract with Alstom to provide maintenance for the 30-strong Tåg i Bergslagen’s (Tågab) fleet of regional trains.
Siemens Mobility will supply Indian Railways with 1,200 locomotives, marking the single largest locomotive order in its history.
ÖBB Rail Cargo Group (RCG) has founded a new subsidiary in Belgrade, Serbia to provide sustainable rail freight transport.
Sydney Metro has contracted Hyundai Movex to install mechanical gap fillers at stations for the Sydney Metro City & Southwest project.
Rail Baltic Estonia has awarded the design works of seven regional stations across the counties of Harju and Pärnu to Ardanuy Ingeneria.
Stadler has signed an agreement with DB Netz to retrofit up to 80 maintenance and track service vehicles with its GUARDIA ETCS system.
The West Midlands Combined Authority (WMCA) has confirmed the first instalment of its 72 million GBP investment in Coventry Very Light Rail.
CAF has taken ownership of the former BWW Bismarck railway depot in Gelsenkirchen, North Rhine-Westphalia (NRW).
Île-de-France Mobilités has announced plans to update metro line 6’s entire fleet of MP73 trains and update the line's track and platforms.
Major works were completed last month to the Bakerloo line and London Overground between London Euston and Watford Junction.
Alstom has signed a contract to supply 10 three-car Metropolis trains for operation on Line 1 of the Santo Domingo Metro.
Thales has been selected to design, install and commission the Operation Control Centre (OCC) for Line 7 of the Santiago Metro in Chile.
Works on the Bay Line transformation project in Wales are set begin with the construction of a new two-platform Butetown railway station.
A total of 130 metres of double track has been installed along Lower Bull Street as part of the Birmingham Eastside Metro extension project.
Governor Kathy Hochul has announced that New York's Interborough Express service will be constructed as a light rail line.
GB Railfreight (GBRf) has signed a new 10-year locomotive leasing deal with rolling stock leasing company, Akiem.
FEATI University, the Philippines, has set its sights on becoming a leading academic institution in railway engineering and technology.
EMR and the University of Sheffield’s Advanced Manufacturing Research Centre are developing a simulation tool to improve depot efficiency.
Rete Ferroviaria Italiana (RFI) has signed an agreement with Hitachi, Mermec, Progress Rail and Alstom to install ERTMS onboard its trains.
Alstom will carry out an overhaul of ScotRail’s Class 334 fleet of 40 trains that operate between Edinburgh and Glasgow.
Brightline has released a video and renderings of the future station at Orlando International Airport in Florida.
Deutsche Bahn (DB) is introducing real-time occupancy information displays on regional routes for the very first time.
Irish Rail has awarded John Sisk and Son the contract for phase 1 works to reinstate the Limerick to Foynes rail line for freight services.
Three international consortiums have qualified for the second stage of the Rail Baltica energy subsystem design and construction procurement.
The West Coast mainline near Carstairs has been reopened for passenger services after emergency engineering works was completed.
Orlando's Right Rail and Universal Orlando Resort have announced plans to open a new SunRail station at the Orange County Convention Center.
The construction tender for the second section of Rail Baltica mainline in Estonia has been announced. Construction is to begin later in 2023.
The Austrian Federal Railways (OEBB) is continuing with its largest ever expansion and investment programme in 2023.
Renfe Mercancías has announced plans to invest 122.7 million EUR into the decarbonisation and digitisation of freight rail in Spain.
Beijing MTR, a subsidiary of MTR Corporation, has announced the opening of Beijing Metro Line 16’s phase III southern section.
Deutsche Bahn (DB) has reached its target volume for biofuel two years ahead of target, hitting 17 million litres of HVO.
Network Rail has completed a series of improvement works for the Transpennine Route Upgrade between Manchester, Huddersfield, Leeds and York.
Egypt National Railways (ENR) has commenced the commercial operation of Talgo Intercity trains between Cairo and Alexandria.
An Alstom consortium has been awarded two new signalling and electrification contracts to support rail modernisation in Romania.
Slovakian rail company ZSSK has ordered a further five RegioPanter electric units from Skoda Group as part of the modernisation of its fleet.
The US DOT has announced nearly 9 billion USD in funding to upgrade and expand passenger rail services along the Northeast Corridor (NEC).
The first RegioPanter trains have commenced service on the newly electrified line from Olomouc to Šumperk via Uničov in the Czech Republic.
LTG Infra has announced a new tender for Rail Baltica construction works in Kėdainiai and Panevėžys, Lithuania.
Deutsche Bahn (DB) has opened its extended vehicle hall at the ICE maintenance plant in Berlin-Rummelsburg.
Progress Rail has been contracted to supply 12 new GT46 locomotives to Qube, an import and export logistics service provider in Australia.
Alstom has completed the extension of the PHX Sky Train automated people mover (APM) system at Phoenix Sky Harbor International Airport.
Brightline has celebrated the ribbon cutting of its Aventura and Boca Raton train stations in Florida, US.
In his final column of the year, Jonn Elledge discusses British and European night trains and uses the phrases 'utter delight' and 'magical'!
VIA Rail Canada has announced the incorporation of VIA HFR to manage the development and delivery of its new High Frequency Rail project.
Spanish Prime Minister Pedro Sánchez and King Felipe VI have inaugurated the Madrid-Murcia high-speed railway line.
Transdev is modernising its fleet in Germany with the introduction of 16 four-unit Stadler FLIRT 3 XL articulated trainsets.
Trenitalia’s ‘Blues’ battery hybrid train is the first tri-mode train to enter passenger service in Europe.
Houston METRO has debuted the first of 14 new fourth generation (H4) light rail vehicles (LRV) for use in downtown Houston, Texas.
Construction has begun on Union Station’s new south passenger concourse in Toronto.When completed it will span roughly 325 metres.
The first RER New Generation (NG) 130-metre train has arrived at SNCF’s Technicentre in Villeneuve Saint-George, France.
Renfe has purchased an additional 97 new Cercanías and Media Distancia trains as part of its train fleet renewal plan.
The Parklife Metro consortium has been awarded the third and final major contract for the Sydney Metro — Western Sydney Airport project.
Transport for London (TfL) has contracted Dr. Sauer & Partners and Arup to complete a Bakerloo Line Extension feasibility study.
Dutch transport company, HTM has contracted Stadler to supply 56 TINA trams for use in The Hague, the Netherlands from 2026.
Ontario is investing 139.5 million CAD in three Northlander trainsets as part of its plan to bring back northeastern passenger rail services.
Amtrak has unveiled renders of its newest train, the Amtrak Airo. The new trains will begin operating across Amtrak routes in 2026.
Renfe has ordered an additional 49 additional Coradia Stream high-capacity trains from Alstom. These will be manufactured in Barcelona.
Dortmunder Eisenbahn (DE) has taken delivery of a new Siemens Vectron Dual Mode locomotive, leased from Alpha Trains.
A 22-metre-long mock-up model has been unveiled of the VDV TramTrain that will operate in regions across Austria and Germany.
Bane NOR has opened the Follobanen double-track high-speed line, which will half travel times between Oslo and Ski from 22 to 11 minutes.
A bridge that will carry direct rail services between Oxford and Cambridge has been positioned over the HS2 route near Calvert, Bucks.
KTZ and Stadler have signed 3 long-term contracts for the supply of 537 coaches, maintenance and purchase of a local production facility.
DB Engineering & Consulting (ECO) is providing technical modelling support for the Link21 rail infrastructure project in San Francisco Bay.
High voltage power systems have been installed and commissioned at Victoria Cross Station for the Sydney Metro City & Southwest service.
Northern Rail has upgraded its TrainCare Centre in Hull to increase its maintenance and servicing capacity and improve service reliability.
CAF has signed a contract with Dutch national operator Nederlandse Spoorwegen (NS) for 60 double-decker Civity trains.
Sydney Build Expo has confirmed that Climate Resilience and Sustainability will both be key themes for next year's event: 6–7 March 2023.
The Medford Branch of the Green Line Extension has entered service, following the opening of the Union Square Branch earlier this year.
Transports publics genevois (TPG) has contracted Stadler to supply 38 TRAMLINK trams in Geneva, Switzerland.
Île-de-France Mobilités has announced that the final electric Francilien train has now commenced service at Saint-Lazare station in Paris.
Groundbreaking for the Metro-North Penn Station Access project was celebrated at a special ceremony on 9 December.
ÖBB has begun operating the first Siemens Desiro ML train in its new fleet for the state of Vorarlberg, Austria.
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