A New Era for the CRN

Mitchel Hanlon
Written by: Mitchel Hanlon

We recently saw some big changes for our regional rail network. After a decade of maintenance serviced by John Holland, UGL Regional Linx (UGLRL) has started their

10 year contract servicing the Country Regional Network (CRN) - over 5,500kms of railway. 

The contract awarded to UGLRL totalled $1.5 billion and signifies a significant investment from the NSW Government in rail infrastructure. “The CRN is the backbone of our regional rail network for both passenger and freight services” Sam Farraway, Regional Transport and Roads Minister for NSW, said. “We have worked closely with UGLRL to ensure that not only will operational performance measures be hit but we also consider the positive impact of increased regional employment in our communities. At least 80 percent of jobs must be regionally based and we have set an industry-leading target of 12 percent for the employment of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people.”

As noted by Mr Farraway, achievements made under the management of John Holland include:

  • 1,300,000+ timber sleepers replaced

  • Over 3,220kms of track resurfaced 

  • 844,000 tonnes of ballast installed 

  • 26 over road bridge renewed, and 

  • 69 level crossing upgrades 

Hanlons have worked closely with John Holland Rail on a number of projects on the CRN.  Some of the projects we’ve completed with John Holland over the past decade are:


While this marks the end of an era and a strong relationship between our firm, John Holland and the CRN, it is an exciting change and we look forward to working with  UGLRL on the regional network in an equally positive partnership.

Our thanks to John Holland Rail CEO, Matt Jones and the wider John Holland team for their contribution to regional Australia.

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