Electrification rail line

Electrification of the 42km Gawler rail line in Northern Adelaide

The Gawler Rail Electrification Project involved the electrification and modernisation of the Gawler rail line, one of the most highly patronised lines on the Adelaide Metropolitan Rail network, to deliver a faster, cleaner, quieter and more reliable public rail service.

The Gawler rail line is a 42km rail line linking the Adelaide CBD to the township of Gawler and forms part of an electrified network from Seaford in the south through Adelaide to Gawler in the north. The infrastructure works were jointly funded by the Australian and South Australian Governments with Acciona commencing construction in 2018 with the first passenger service opening on 12 June 2022.

The infrastructure works were commenced in 2018 under a Design and Construct contract, and was converted in 2020 to the Gawler Rail Electrification Project Alliance. The project supported, on average, approximately 675 full-time equivalent jobs per year over the life of the project.


  • Location: Adelaide, South Australia
  • Infrastructure Contract: Design and Construct converted to an Alliance in 2020.
  • Infrastructure: 42km of rail and signalling
  • Open to Traffic: 2022


  • 42km of Electrification infrastructure installed in a Brownfields Rail environment
  • Complete new Signalling backbone installed and upgrade to existing signalling system
  • Total workforce hours completed 2,369,615
  • 87% of hours performed by South Australians
  • Over $11.4M spent on First Nations owned businesses
  • 85,421 hours performed by First Nations people


Project Benefits

  • More reliable services
  • Improved commuter safety
  • Efficiency in travel time from Gawler to Adelaide
  • Introduction of Clean and Green high performance electric trains to replace existing Diesel fleet
  • Project supported local jobs and contractors


Scope of Works

  • Electrification of the Adelaide - Gawler rail line and Dry Creek Railcar Maintenance Depot including all masts, gantries, overhead wiring system, and tamping of the line including the removal of redundant points and rails
  • Installation of a new traction power feeder station along with track sectioning cabins and integration into the network via upgraded SCADA system
  • New signalling system including new CSR along the full alignment of the works
  • Fencing of the rail corridor



General stats

  1. km of rail – 42 km of tamping and ballast consolidation in both directions including associated rail works such as destressing and the removal of redundant rails and points
  2. Inground common service trench – 57 km
  3. Foundations – 1600
  4. New structures (masts, portals etc) - 1100
  5. OHW – 133 wire runs equating to 550 km of overhead wire
  6. Number of pits – 900
  7. 42km of new signalling infrastructure
  8. 3 new track sectioning cabins
  9. 55 km of new fencing
  10. Construction of a new bridge at King Street Gawler
  11. 28 booster transformers
  12. New SCADA system for the entire network incorporating the Seaford Line
  13. date started -2018 and opened to first electric passenger service - Sunday 12 June 2022



Workforce stats

8.1% of hours performed by cadets/apprentices/trainees/graduates

21% of hours performed by target group people (First Nations people, cadets/apprentices/trainees/graduates and local people with barriers to employment)

Over $11.4M spent on First Nations owned businesses