THE Federal Liberal and Nationals Government will invest $1.5 million to restore the Oberon Tarana branch line so that it can carry a heritage tourist train through the area, attracting even more visitors to the Greater Blue Mountains region.

Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Infrastructure, Transport and Regional Development Michael McCormack said the funding would go towards Stage 1 of the project.

“This exciting investment will attract thousands of extra visitors to Oberon each year which means there’s more people dining in the town’s restaurants, staying in the local motels and visiting the other wonderful tourist attractions the region has to offer,” Mr McCormack said.

“Stage 1 involves the installation of 5.6 kilometres of new rail line, the purchase and placement of new sleepers, drainage, earthworks and all labour costs.

“Andrew Gee has worked so hard to deliver this project. He is a fighter and a strong voice for the people of Calare and that’s why we need him to continue to stand up for the regions in Canberra.” 

Assistant Minister to the Deputy Prime Minister and Federal Member for Calare Andrew Gee said the project would provide a huge boost to local businesses.

“Volunteers at the Oberon Tarana Railway Committee have big plans to enhance rail heritage in the region but they need our help to make it happen,” Mr Gee said.

“The running of the new train will generate jobs in the tourism industry and in construction and I’m so proud the Liberals and Nationals are helping to get this important project off the ground.

“Along with the running of the train, there are also plans to upgrade and open Oberon Station as a vibrant Heritage and Railway Display and I look forward to seeing it through to fruition.”

Shane Manning