NSW TrainLink

Last updated

NSW TrainLink
NSW TrainLink logo.svg
Hunter Railcar 2707 2757 (30742891027).jpg
TfNSW T.svg
Roundel
Overview
Owner Transport for NSW
Area served New South Wales and some regional services to other major cities interstate
Locale New South Wales
Transit type
Annual ridership46.4 million (2017/18)
Chief executiveDale Merrick
Website transportnsw.info
Operation
Began operation1 July 2013;10 years ago (2013-07-01)
Operator(s)NSW Trains and private coach operators
Technical
Track gauge 1,435 mm (4 ft 8+12 in) standard gauge
Electrification 1,500 V DC from overhead catenary
System map
NSW TrainLink

NSW TrainLink is a train and coach operator in Australia, providing services throughout New South Wales and the Australian Capital Territory, along with limited interstate services into Victoria, Queensland and South Australia. Its primary intercity and regional services are spread throughout five major rail lines, operating out of Sydney's Central railway station.

Contents

NSW TrainLink was formed on 1 July 2013 when RailCorp was restructured and CountryLink was merged with the intercity services of CityRail.

History

In May 2012, the Minister for Transport announced a restructure of RailCorp. [1] [2] On 1 July 2013, NSW TrainLink took over (a) the operation of regional rail and coach services previously operated by CountryLink; (b) non-metropolitan Sydney services previously operated by CityRail; and (c) responsibility for the Main Northern railway line from Berowra railway station to Newcastle station, the Main Western railway line from Emu Plains railway station to Bathurst railway station, and the Illawarra railway line from Waterfall station to Bomaderry railway station. [3] [4] [5]

On 21 August 2023, a transition was announced for the operation of the Mariyung trains and the majority of intercity passenger services, crew and stations from NSW TrainLink to Sydney Trains. [6]

Network

The NSW TrainLink network is divided into two tiers, branded as Intercity and Regional. Intercity services operate commuter style services, mainly to and from Sydney with limited stops within the metropolitan area. The Intercity network is part of Transport for NSW's Opal ticketing system. Seats on Intercity services are available on a first-come, first-served basis. Regional services operate in areas of lower population density, providing passenger transport mainly between regional NSW and Sydney (although some cross country and interstate services operate). Regional services use a separate, reserved seat, ticketing system.

An intercity service between Sydney and Newcastle V4 (30612793807).jpg
An intercity service between Sydney and Newcastle

Intercity services

NSW TrainLink Intercity network (excluding the Sydney suburban portions of lines) CityRail InterCity map.png
NSW TrainLink Intercity network (excluding the Sydney suburban portions of lines)

Intercity services operate to a distance approximately 200 kilometres (124 mi) from Sydney, bounded by Dungog in the north, Scone in the north-west, Bathurst to the west, Goulburn in the south-west and Bomaderry to the south.

Electric services extend from Sydney north to Newcastle, west to Lithgow and south to Port Kembla and Kiama. Most electric services originate from or terminate at Central.

Diesel trains serve the more distant or less populated parts of the Intercity network. Hunter Line services operate from Newcastle to Telarah with some extending to Dungog and Scone. Southern Highlands Line services operate between Campbelltown and Moss Vale with a limited number extending to Sydney and Goulburn. Diesel services also operate on the South Coast Line between Kiama and Bomaderry. The Bathurst Bullet provides a twice daily, limited stop service between Sydney and Bathurst.

Lines

Line colour and name Between Electric services Map
Central and Lithgow with limited services to Bathurst to Lithgow NSW TrainLink
Central and Newcastle Yes NSW TrainLink
Newcastle and Telarah with limited services to Dungog or Scone No NSW TrainLink
Central a and Bomaderry or Port Kembla to Kiama and Port Kembla NSW TrainLink
Campbelltown b and Moss Vale with limited services to Goulburn No NSW TrainLink
^a Some peak services and most weekend services on the South Coast Line run to/from Bondi Junction
^b Some peak services on the Southern Highlands Line run to/from Central. At other times, a change of train is required at Campbelltown

Intercity train fares

The Opal fare system for Intercity services is fully integrated with the Sydney Trains and Sydney Metro networks – trips involving Intercity, Sydney suburban and metro services are calculated as a single fare and there is no interchange penalty. Opal is also valid on bus, ferry, and light rail services in the Greater Sydney region (except for the Southern Highlands) but separate fares apply for these modes. The following table lists Opal fares for reusable smartcards and single trip tickets as: [7]

Metro and Train
As of 16 Oct 230–10 km10–20 km20–35 km35–65 km65 km+
Adult cards & contactless (peak)$4.00$4.97$5.72$7.65$9.84
Adult cards & contactless (off-peak)$2.80$3.47$4.00$5.35$6.88
Other cards (peak)$2.00$2.49$2.86^$3.83^$4.92^
Other cards (off-peak)$1.40$1.74$2.00$2.68^$3.44^
Adult single trip$4.80$6.00$6.90$9.20$11.80
Child/Youth single trip$2.40$3.00$3.40$4.60$5.90

^ = $2.50 for Senior/Pensioner cardholders

Bus and coach services

NSW TrainLink operates several bus routes along corridors where the railway line has been closed to passengers or as a supplement to rail services. These bus services are operated by private sector bus companies contracted by NSW TrainLink.

^(r) Seat reservations required
An XPT travelling from Melbourne to Sydney, pictured between Jindalee and Morrisons Hill, New South Wales NSW TrainLink XPT Jindalee - Morrisons Hill (cropped).jpg
An XPT travelling from Melbourne to Sydney, pictured between Jindalee and Morrisons Hill, New South Wales

Regional services

NSW TrainLink Regional Trains network (highlighted in blue) CountrylinkMap.png
NSW TrainLink Regional Trains network (highlighted in blue)

NSW TrainLink operates passenger services throughout New South Wales and interstate to Brisbane, Canberra and Melbourne. All rail services feature diesel rolling stock. For more details of each train line see List of NSW TrainLink train routes.

Line colour and name Between
Central to Broken Hill or Dubbo
Central to Brisbane
Central to Armidale or Moree
Central to Canberra or Griffith or Melbourne

North Coast

The North Coast services operate through the Mid North Coast, Northern Rivers and South East Queensland regions. Services operate on the Main North and North Coast lines, travelling between Sydney Central station and Roma Street station in Brisbane. [8]

Principal stations served by XPT trains are:

See the full list of stations served.

Cities and towns served by NSW TrainLink coaches connecting off North Coast services include: Tea Gardens, Forster, Port Macquarie, Yamba, Moree, Alstonville, Lismore, Ballina, Byron Bay, Murwillumbah, Tweed Heads and Surfers Paradise.

North Western

The North Western region services operate through the Hunter, New England and North West Slopes & Plains regions. Services operate on the Main North line from Sydney Central station to Werris Creek. where the service divides for Armidale and Moree. [9]

Principal stations served by Xplorer trains are:

Cities and towns served by NSW TrainLink coaches connecting off North Western services include: Wee Waa, Inverell, Grafton, Glen Innes and Tenterfield.

Western

The Western region services operate through the Central Tablelands, Orana, and Far West regions. Services operate on the Main Western Line from Sydney Central station to Dubbo and the Broken Hill line to Broken Hill. [10]

Principal stations served by XPT trains are:

Principal stations served by Xplorer trains are:

Cities and towns served by NSW TrainLink coaches connecting off Western services include: Oberon, Mudgee, Baradine, Cowra, Grenfell, Forbes, Parkes, Condobolin, Lightning Ridge Brewarrina, Bourke, Warren and Broken Hill.

Southern

The Southern region services operate through the Illawarra, South Coast, Monaro, South West Slopes, Southern Tablelands, Riverina, and Sunraysia regions, plus the Australian Capital Territory and parts of Victoria. The Government of Victoria contributes financially to the provision of the interstate services. The ACT Government does not make a financial contribution.

Services operate on the:

Principal stations served by XPT trains are:

Principal stations served by Xplorer trains are:

Cities and towns served by NSW TrainLink coaches connecting off Southern services include: Wollongong, Bombala, Eden, Tumbarumba, Bathurst, Dubbo, Condobolin, Griffith, Mildura and Echuca.

Roundel used to identify coach services TfNSW C.svg
Roundel used to identify coach services

Coach services

Dysons Irizar i6 bodied Scania K310IB at Wagga Wagga station in September 2015 Dysons (BS01 CU), in NSW TrainLink livery, Irizar i6 bodied Scania K310IB at Wagga Wagga Railway Station.jpg
Dysons Irizar i6 bodied Scania K310IB at Wagga Wagga station in September 2015
Dysons Mitsubishi Fuso Rosa at Wagga Wagga station in January 2015 Dysons (BS00 DQ), in NSW TrainLink livery, Fuso Rosa at Wagga Wagga Railway Station.jpg
Dysons Mitsubishi Fuso Rosa at Wagga Wagga station in January 2015

NSW TrainLink continued with the existing contracts entered into by CityRail and CountryLink for the provision of coach services.

On 1 July 2014, the Lithgow to Gulgong, Coonabarabran, Baradine services passed from Greyhound Australia to Ogden's Coaches. [12]

In July 2014, Transport for NSW commenced the re-tendering process for most of the routes with the previous 24 contracts reorganised into 18 contracts. The new contracts commenced on 1 January 2015 for a five-year period, with an option to extend for three years if performance criteria are met. [12] [13] The services operated by Forest Coach Lines and Sunstate Coaches commenced new five-year contracts on 1 July 2016. [14] [15]

The full list of coach operators providing services as at January 2015 was: [12] [16]

OperatorServices
Australia Wide Coaches Lithgow to Bathurst, Orange & Parkes
BusBiz Lithgow to Dubbo & Nyngan
Dubbo to Lightning Ridge
Dubbo to Bourke
Dubbo to Broken Hill
Coolabah to Brewarrina
Wagga Wagga to Kingston and Queanbeyan
Berrima Coaches Picton to Bowral
Busways Port Macquarie to Wauchope, Wauchope to Port Macquarie
CDC Canberra Canberra to Bombala & Eden
Dysons Wagga Wagga to Griffith
Cootamundra to Tumbarumba
Cootamundra to Bathurst/Dubbo
Parkes to Condobolin
Forest Coach Lines Narrabri to Wee Waa & Burren Junction
Hunter Valley Buses Fassifern to Toronto
Loader's Coaches Lithgow to Grenfell
Oberon Bus Company Mount Victoria to Oberon
Ogden's Coaches Lithgow to Gulgong, Coonabarabran & Baradine
Oxley Explorer Armidale to Tenterfield, Port Macquarie to Tamworth, Tamworth to Port Macquarie
Port Stephens Coaches Broadmeadow to Taree
Premier Shoalhaven Kiama to Bomaderry
Moss Vale to Bundanoon/Goulburn
G&J Purtill Cootamundra to Condobolin
Cootamundra to Mildura
Wagga Wagga to Echuca
Albury to Echuca
Roadcoach Moss Vale to Wollongong
Queanbeyan to Cootamundra
Sunstate Coaches Grafton to Byron Bay
Casino to Tweed Heads
Casino to Surfers Paradise
Casino to Brisbane
Symes Coaches Tamworth/Armidale to Inverell
Moree to Grafton

+ not included in January 2015 re-tendering process

Since 2018, NSW TrainLink introduced several new road coach services on a trial basis: [17] [ better source needed ]

Rolling stock

The NSW TrainLink fleet consists of both diesel and electric traction, with the oldest of the fleet being the V sets and the youngest being the H sets, the latter is shared with Sydney Trains. Tangaras operate some peak hour South Coast Line services as far as Wollongong. The entire NSW TrainLink fleet is maintained by Sydney Trains either directly or via a Sydney Trains contract with UGL Rail.

Intercity services

ClassImageTypeTop speedCarriage NumbersLinesBuilt
km/hmph
V set V7 (45682330221) (cropped).jpg Electric multiple unit 115711961977–1989
T set 2020-04-08 Tanraga train T45 at Heathcote railway station, Sydney (cropped).jpg 447 (shared with Sydney Trains)(between Waterfall and Port Kembla)1987–1995
Endeavour railcar NSWTrainLink Endeavour (cropped).jpg Diesel multiple unit 1609928(Bathurst Bullet and between Lithgow and Bathurst)(between Kiama and Bomaderry)1994–1996
Hunter railcar Hunter railcars 2751 & 2701 (45512879812).jpg 142006–2007
H set H49 (45785868011).jpg Electric multiple unit 13081221 (shared with Sydney Trains, due to be transferred to Sydney Trains)2006–2012

Interstate and regional services

ClassImageTypeTop speedCarriage NumbersRoutes operatedBuilt
km/hmph
XPT XPT train power car.jpg Diesel locomotive 19312019 locomotives1981–1994
XPT carriages XPT carriages (XF 2220).jpg Passenger carriage 60 carriages
Xplorer NSW TrainLink Xplorer 2508.jpg Diesel multiple unit 16099231993

Future fleet

ClassImageTypeTop speedCarriage NumbersLinesBuilt
km/hmph
D set Mariyung D Set D27 on Delivery Transfer.jpg Electric multiple unit 16099610 (to be built)2019–present
CAF Civity Electro-diesel multiple unit 16099117 (to be built)2026/27 (scheduled)

A fleet of 610 D set carriages will be introduced to the NSW TrainLink intercity network. They will replace the V sets and allow the H sets to be transferred to Sydney Trains services. The first was delivered in December 2019. [32] [33] [34]

A fleet of bi-mode CAF Civity trains are scheduled to replace the XPT, Xplorer and Endeavour fleets as part of the NSW TrainLink Regional Train Project. [35] [36] [37] [38] They would enter service between 2026 and 2027.

Performance

In the year ended 30 June 2018, 44.7 million journeys were made on intercity services. There were 1.7 million journeys on regional services. Patronage on intercity services increased by 9 percent over the previous financial year but fell by 1.4 percent for regional services. [39] Patronage surged on regional trains in 2023, reversing pandemic-era losses and increasing a further three percent, with a particular increase in ridership on Sydney-Melbourne services. 107,000 monthly journeys were made on regional trains in 2023. [40]

Intercity services are considered on-time if they operate within six minutes of their scheduled time. [41] For regional services the benchmark is ten minutes. [42] The target is for 92 percent of intercity services and 78 percent of regional services to operate on-time. In 2017–18 NSW Trains met both the Intercity target and the regional target. However, it failed to meet the Intercity target during peak hours. [43] These results partially reverse a trend of failing to meet punctuality targets. Since the organisation commenced operations in 2013–14, NSW Trains has never met the intercity peak punctuality target. [44] [43] Regional train services have achieved their punctuality target twice, in 2015–16 and 2017–18. The 2015–16 result was the first time NSW Trains or its predecessor RailCorp had achieved the target in 13 years. [45] [43]

The following table lists patronage figures for the network during the corresponding financial year. Australia's financial years start on 1 July and end on 30 June. Major events that affected the number of journeys made or how patronage is measured are included as notes.

NSW TrainLink patronage by financial year
Year2013–142014–152015–162016–172017–182018–192019–20
Intercity (millions)32.9 [lower-alpha 1] 34.5 [lower-alpha 2] 38.5 [lower-alpha 3] 40.8 [lower-alpha 4] 44.7 [lower-alpha 5] 41.331.2 [lower-alpha 6]
Regional trains (millions)1.231.221.241.69< 1.7 [lower-alpha 7]
Regional coaches (millions)0.5720.5370.510
References [46] [47] [48] [39] [49]
  1. Opal rollout completed in April 2014
  2. Services in central Newcastle replaced by buses in December 2014
  3. Increase largely due to a change in the calculation of journeys for Opal vs magnetic stripe tickets
  4. Non-Opal tickets discontinued in August 2016
  5. Newcastle Interchange extension opened in October 2017
  6. Patronage was lower than previous years due to people staying at home and not taking public transport to school or work during the COVID-19 pandemic
  7. Patronage reported as 1.7 million journeys but was down by 1.4 percent compared to the previous year

The following table shows the patronage of each line of the NSW TrainLink Intercity network for the year ending 30 June 2022, based on Opal tap on and tap off data. [50]

2021–22 NSW TrainLink Intercity patronage by line
3179000
6015000
418000
3013000
334000

Quiet carriages

Quiet carriages are designated carriages where noise made by passengers is requested to be kept to a minimum. Passengers are asked to place mobile phones on silent, move carriages in order to have a conversation with another passenger and use headphones when listening to music. [51]

Quiet carriages are on Intercity services are located in four carriages on 8 car sets, two carriages on 4 car sets and one carriage on two car sets. [52]

Quiet carriages were first introduced on the Central Coast & Newcastle Line in early 2012 as a three-month trial. On 1 September 2012, quiet carriages were permanently introduced and expanded to all intercity services operating on the Blue Mountains and South Coast Line. [51] As of 2013, Quiet carriages had been introduced to the entire NSW TrainLink Intercity network.

Depots

The XPT fleet is maintained at the XPT Service Centre and the Endeavour and Xplorer fleets at Eveleigh Railway Workshops. The V sets are maintained at Flemington Maintenance Depot. The D sets will be maintained at a new facility at Kangy Angy. The new bi-mode [53] fleet will be maintained at a new facility, Mindyarra Maintenance Centre, in Dubbo. [54] [55]

Related Research Articles

<span class="mw-page-title-main">CityRail</span> Former Sydney passenger rail network operator

CityRail was a passenger railway brand operated by the State Rail Authority from 1989 to 2003 and by RailCorp from 2003 to 2013 with services in and around Sydney, Newcastle and Wollongong, the three largest cities in New South Wales, Australia. It was established in January 1989 and abolished in June 2013 when it was superseded by Sydney Trains and NSW TrainLink.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">CountryLink</span> New South Wales government rail and road passenger operator

CountryLink was a passenger rail and road service brand that operated in regional areas of New South Wales, and to and from Canberra, Brisbane and Melbourne. Originally created as a business unit of the State Rail Authority of New South Wales, it later became a subsidiary of RailCorp. CountryLink operated rail services using XPT and Xplorer rolling stock, with connecting coach services operated under contract by private operators.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">South Coast Line</span> Rail service in New South Wales, Australia

The South Coast Line (SCO) is an intercity rail service operated by NSW TrainLink that services the Illawarra region of New South Wales, Australia. The service runs from Central, and runs the entire length of the eponymous South Coast railway line to Bomaderry. The service also runs along the Eastern Suburbs railway line at peak hours and the Port Kembla railway line to Port Kembla. It is operated with NSW TrainLink H sets and Sydney Trains T sets, with Endeavour railcars operating the service on the non-electrified line between Kiama and Bomaderry.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Southern Highlands Line</span> Rail service in New South Wales, Australia

The Southern Highlands Line (SHL) is an intercity rail service operated by NSW TrainLink that services the Macarthur, Southern Highlands and Southern Tablelands regions of New South Wales. First operating in 1869, the service runs from Campbelltown across the Main Southern railway line through to Goulburn, with peak hour services extending the route to Central. The railway service operates alongside a bus route from Picton to Bowral, operating on the route of the Picton – Mittagong loop railway line, and a regional coach service from Bundanoon to Wollongong on the South Coast Line, operating on the corridor of the Unanderra–Moss Vale railway line.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Blue Mountains Line</span> Rail service in New South Wales, Australia

The Blue Mountains Line (BMT) is an inter urban commuter rail service operated by NSW TrainLink serving the Blue Mountains region of New South Wales, Australia. The line travels west from Sydney to the major town of Katoomba and on to Mount Victoria, Lithgow and Bathurst. Mount Victoria is the terminus for most electric services, but some services terminate at Lithgow instead. Two express services per day in each direction, known as the Bathurst Bullet, extend to the regional city of Bathurst, which is supplemented by road coaches connecting Bathurst to Lithgow. Due to electrification limits at Lithgow, the Bathurst Bullet is run using the Endeavour railcars, which operate on diesel. The Blue Mountains Line operates over a mostly duplicated section of the Main Western line. As such, the tracks are also traversed by the Central West XPT, Outback Xplorer and Indian Pacific passenger services and by freight trains.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Maitland railway station</span> Railway station in New South Wales, Australia

Maitland railway station is located on the Main Northern line in New South Wales, Australia. It serves the city of Maitland opening on in 1880 as West Maitland being renamed on 1 April 1949. It is the junction station for the Main Northern and North Coast lines. It was added to the New South Wales State Heritage Register on 2 April 1999.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Broadmeadow railway station</span> Railway station in New South Wales, Australia

Broadmeadow railway station is a major regional interchange located on the Main Northern Line. The station itself serves the Newcastle suburb of Broadmeadow. The station was first opened on 15 August 1887.

The railways of New South Wales, Australia, use a large variety of passenger and freight rolling stock. The first railway in Sydney was opened in 1855 between Sydney and Granville, now a suburb of Sydney but then a major agricultural centre. The railway formed the basis of the New South Wales Government Railways. Passenger and freight services were operated from the beginning. By 1880, there was a half hourly service to Homebush.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">New South Wales XPT</span> Express passenger train in New South Wales, Australia

The New South Wales XPT is a class of diesel-powered passenger trains built by Comeng and ABB. Based on the British Rail-designed High Speed Train, each XPT set comprises two XP power cars in a push-pull configuration and, between them, between four and seven passenger carriages.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">New South Wales Xplorer</span> Class of diesel multiple unit trains

The Xplorer is a class of diesel multiple unit trains built by ABB. Initially entering service in October 1993 with CountryLink, the Xplorers are mechanically identical to the Endeavour railcars, though feature a higher level of passenger amenity. All 23 carriages were built in the Dandenong rolling stock factory. The Xplorers currently operate under NSW TrainLink, running on the regional Main North, Main Western and Main Southern lines throughout New South Wales.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Albury V/Line rail service</span> Passenger rail service in Victoria and New South Wales, Australia

The Albury line is a regional passenger rail service operated by V/Line in Victoria, Australia. It serves passengers between the state capital of Melbourne and the regional cities of Benalla, Wangaratta, Wodonga, and the NSW border city of Albury.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Sydney Trains</span> Operator of passenger rail services in metropolitan Sydney

Sydney Trains is the operator and brand name of the commuter rail network serving the city of Sydney, New South Wales, Australia. The network is a commuter rail system with a central underground core that covers 369 km (229 mi) of route length over 813 km (505 mi) of track, with 170 stations on eight lines.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Central West Express</span>

The Central West Express is the legacy name for the Australian passenger train operating on the Main Western line in New South Wales from Sydney to Dubbo.

The NSW TrainLink fleet of trains serves the areas outside Sydney, Australia, mainly interurban and interstate lines. The NSW TrainLink fleet consists of both diesel and electric traction, with the oldest of the fleet being the V sets and the youngest being the H sets.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Transport in Canberra</span> Information about transport in Canberra, Australia

Transport in Canberra is provided by private cars, buses, taxis and light rail, while rail, air, and long-distance coach services operate for travel beyond Canberra. A vast road network also plays a major role in transport within and beyond the city.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Bathurst Bullet</span> Passenger train connecting Sydney and Bathurst, Australia

The Bathurst Bullet is an express passenger train on the Blue Mountains Line operated by NSW TrainLink between Sydney and Bathurst. The service operates from Bathurst towards Sydney in the morning, and returns in the afternoon.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Dubbo railway station</span> Railway station in New South Wales, Australia

Dubbo railway station is a heritage-listed railway station and bus interchange located on the Main Western line in Dubbo in the Dubbo Regional Council local government area of New South Wales, Australia. The station serves the city of Dubbo and was opened on 1 February 1881. The station is also known as Dubbo Railway Station and yard group. The property was added to the New South Wales State Heritage Register on 2 April 1999. The station and associated yards were designed by the office of the Engineer-in-Chief of the NSW Government Railways, under the direction of John Whitton.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Tarana railway station</span> Railway station in New South Wales, Australia

Tarana railway station is a heritage-listed railway station located on the Main Western line in Tarana, City of Lithgow, New South Wales, Australia. It is also known as the Tarana Railway Station and yard group. The property was added to the New South Wales State Heritage Register on 2 April 1999.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">NSW TrainLink Regional Train Project</span>

The NSW TrainLink Regional Train Project is an initiative of Transport for NSW to procure new bi-mode CAF Civity trains to replace NSW TrainLink's Endeavour, Xplorer and XPT fleets.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Bourke railway station</span> Former railway station in New South Wales, Australia

Bourke railway station is a heritage-listed disused railway station and present coach terminal in Bourke, in the Far West region of New South Wales.

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