Newcastle rail: July new date for rail decision appeal

THE fate of Newcastle’s heavy rail line appears unlikely to be decided by a court until at least July – months after the state election is held, reports the Newcastle Herald.

In a decision handed down on Christmas Eve last year, the Supreme Court ruled that the government could not proceed with the removal of the heavy rail line without State Parliament first passing an act to approve its official closure.

The government stopped the train services into Newcastle railway station on Boxing Day anyway, and removed some of the heavy rail infrastructure to open up new pedestrian crossings.

But it has been forced to hold off undertaking more extensive works as part of the project while it appeals the court decision.

The government, if reelected, could face major problems getting such an act through parliament if it does not secure control of the state’s upper house, with minor party the Christian Democracts opposed to the rail line truncation, along with Labor and the Greens.

Read the full article at the Newcastle Herald.