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Abt Railway

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The Abt railway passenger and freight services (operated as the West Coast Wilderness Railway) have been suspended from the end of April 2013 when Federal Holdings Tasmania Pty Ltd surrendered its lease for the railway.

Railway passenger services on the railway have temporarily ceased and bookings are not being taken.

The Abt railway has become an important feature of the tourism industry and economy of the West Coast of Tasmania and the Tasmanian Government is working to have the railway operational for the 2013-14 summer tourist season.

This suspension period will enable major infrastructure maintenance and capital improvements to be undertaken with funding of $6 million from the Commonwealth Government committed to the Abt railway to ensure that it continues to operate at a safe standard.

You can register below if you wish to be notified once a recommencement date has been finalised and booking services are available.

The Department of Infrastructure, Energy and Resources is leading an interdepartmental team to oversee the transition of the railway to a new operator.

The State Government has announced funding of up to $1.5 million per year for four years to underwrite operation of the Abt railway.

An Expression of Interest process for a new operator is being coordinated by business advisors KPMG on behalf of the owner of the Abt railway infrastructure, the Abt Railway Ministerial Corporation (ARMC). Applications for the Expressions of Interest process have now closed and applicants that have successfully passed the prequalification stage of the process have been notified.

Key railway staff previously employed by Federal Holdings Tasmania have been employed by the ARMC to aid the transition to a new operator. The ARMC will operate the Abt railway while maintenance works on the railway infrastructure is undertaken.

For further information about the Abt railway, its history and management please refer to the ARMC Annual Report 2012, (PDF)

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