A world’s best practice waste management system is proposed to receive, sort, separate and recycle ACT waste that is currently going to landfill.

CRS can significantly reduce the volume of household, municipal and commercial waste going directly to landfill within 18 months of receiving approvals for the Fyshwick materials recovery facility (MRF) EIS and the rail freight terminal (RFT) development application. A Draft EIS is now submitted for this MRF development proposal and a development application for the RFT by May 2018.


  • Joint Venture between Benedict Industries and Access Recycling to form Capital Recycling Solutions
  • CRS owns 2 hectares (Block 9, Section 8) of industrial zoned land at 16 Ipswich St, Fyshwick and is finalising the acquisition of 1.2 hectares (Block 11, Section 8) of land adjoining the rail frontage, with access to Lithgow Street
  • CRS has a 20-year licence arrangement with John Holland Rail to lease the “South Shunt” rail siding adjacent to the site (part Block 11, section 47), which means we can load and unload goods transported by rail
  • The total project could deliver to Canberra a modern, general freight terminal and the ability to load and unload containers onto freight trains as well as deliver waste residues to landfill
  • The materials recovery facility is designed to receive 300,000 tonnes per annum of waste throughput for the purpose of extracting recyclables


The Draft Environmental Impact Statement for the MRF has been developed as part of a comprehensive planning assessment process.
The ACT Government issued a new stringent scoping requirement for the preparation of this statement, and these can be found on the Department of Planning and Environment website.

A seperate develoment application will be lodged for the RFT on part block 11 section 47 – the south shunt.

Community consultation started early and has been an important part of the process. CRS is always seeking your ideas and comments to help us achieve the best outcome for all. We invite people to contact us and have their say on this new initiative for Canberra by calling 1800 334 696 or sending us a message via the Contact CRS button at the front of this website.
As part of the submitted Draft MRF and RFT EIS, detailed traffic, noise, hydrology, geology, visual impacts, odour, health and bushfire risk studies have been prepared by experts.

The results of all studies have been compiled in the Draft EIS and exhibited for community consideration and response. Community consultation comments for each EIS will then be included in each EIS document, that will go to the ACT Government for consideration.


  • The facility will provide a processing capacity for 300,000 tonnes per annum of both unrecycled raw wastes and residues from other recycling processes.
  • Wastes will be delivered via a security-controlled gateway from Lithgow street. Vehicles will be weighed upon entry and then proceed into an odour-controlled building. Vehicles will be directed where to unload, and the contents observed for hidden or inappropriate materials. Vehicles will then exit the building, pass through a chlorinated wheel bath, be weighed and then leave the site onto Ipswich Street spreading vehicle traffic and minimising flow conflicts.
  • A new set of vehicles activated traffic lights are proposed to ensure vehicle and pedestrian safety on Ipswich street
    All waste received will be processed expeditiously and fed into one of the MRF processing lines.
  • The MRF will have two separate processing lines specifically designed to process MSW waste and the C & I waste streams separately of which C & I is typically drier, bulkier and contains far less organic waste. The separation will be a combination of mechanical and manual sorting to be able to remove reusable materials for export from the site.

Image: Site Flow

  • Typically, materials such as paper, cardboard, certain plastics and metals are recovered. Inert and non-combustible materials such as glass, soil, aggregates are also separated and exported from the site. Plastics #1 (HDPE), #2 (PET), #3 (PVC) and #6 (PS), metals, clean paper and cardboard and other extracted recyclables will be baled, containerised and then transported by rail from the site for sale in the appropriate recycling commodities market.
  • Inert non-combustible materials, such as soil fines, glass or aggregates will be conveyed to bins where they will then be transported by truck to an appropriate recycler of these commodities.
  • Where possible, the recyclables will be baled and packed into containers using forklifts. This will be done within the building. The only containers stored external to the buildings will be those in readiness for transport, ideally by rail, to landfill which will be transported daily.
  • CRS conservatively proposes to capture and recycle more than 20% from the waste residue streams received. The remaining residues would then be transferred, ideally by rail, using the proposed RFT, to the Woodlawn Bioreactor Landfill.
  • This transfer of the residues will require the installation of two “slug packer” compactors, within the MRF building, to containerise waste residies. Ideally the containers would then be transferred to the Woodlawn Bioreactor landfill. This waste by rail system has been successfully used by Veolia in NSW for the last 15 years and can carry up to 900,000tpa from Sydney to Woodlawn.
  • Hazardous and liquid wastes will not be accepted including sewerage sludges. CRS is confident that this proposal will be able to service the needs of the ACT community and a regional catchment well inn to the future.
  • Some 48 full-time and 10 part-time jobs are created when the centre is fully operational.
  • More than 80 jobs created during construction.
  • The materials recovery processing would work in 2 shifts over 6 days (Mon-Sat) from 6.00am to 12.00am.
  • The gate opening hours to receive waste would be Monday to Saturday, from 6.00am to 10.00pm and Sundays from 8.00am to 2.00pm.

Image: Internal MRF Flow

South Shunt – Fyshwick

Train moving containers of waste/recyclables


Adjacent to the subject site is the disused ‘South Shunt’ railway siding which previously connected the siding directly into the site for fuel handling activities. This internal siding has now been disconnected and the entire shunt is currently not used but will be utilised after refurbishment for the proposed rail freight activities.

In November 2014 Access Recycling signed a license agreement with John Holland Rail and Transport for NSW to lease the Kingston Rail Terminal (Canberra’s only railway freight terminal) for a two-year period. In March 2015 Access began operating a weekly rail container freight service from Canberra to Port Botany.

It was the first container freight train to operate out of the ACT in 30 years, and thus Access Recycling were able to remove sixty semi-trailer loads from the roads each fortnight. The rail service carried between 50 and 60 shipping containers of recycled metal to Port Botany fortnightly, from where it was exported to steel mills in South East Asia. In March 2016 the service was suspended, due to ongoing problems with the condition of the hardstand at the Kingston Terminal.

Kingston was not originally constructed for this purpose and could not support the weight of the container-handling forklifts. Ahead of suspending the service, work began find an alternate site and it was decided to relocate the freight terminal to Fyshwick and resume the weekly rail service. A Development Application (DA201630668) was made as a condition of a Direct-Sale of Land process to purchase a disused parcel of land between the Access Recycling depot and the rail corridor. The DA was successful with a Notice of Decision received 17 April 2017. Ministerial Approval for the Direct Sale of land was recently received, and the purchase arrangements are soon to be finalised.

CRS was expecting to be able to create an operational rail terminal in late 2018, However, the development consent was revoked by ESPDD and the sale offer withdrawn. CRS took this matter to court in late 2018 and is awaiting a judicial determination.

CRS has already been granted a 20-year sub-licence to operate a rail terminal in the rail corridor by Transport for NSW.

A development application has been lodged to establish a Freight Transport Facility (FTF) (DA201834656) on Block 11 Section 8 and a development application has also been submitted in late 2018 for the RFT and FTF (DA201835108) to re-establish the south shunt as a working rail terminal on part Block 11 Section 47.


The Woodlawn Bioreactor landfill (WBL) currently manages around 30% of Sydney’s putrescible waste and is capturing its methane emissions to generate clean energy for up to 10,000 homes.

The Woodlawn facility is licensed to receive 1,100,000Tpa of waste and most of this is approved to arrive by rail. The NSW Government have approved an extension to the existing rail siding within Tarago to enable a more efficient use of the rail network between Goulburn and Canberra.

To tackle the rising volume of putrescible waste in the Sydney region at the turn of the millennium, the NSW Minister for Planning approved a proposal from Veolia to develop a rail transfer terminal, to move waste from Sydney to a landfill bioreactor and a treatment facility at the Woodlawn site. Veolia commissioned the construction of a rail transfer terminal in Clyde (21km west of Sydney’s CBD) and the WBL came on-line in 2004.

In 2016 Veolia commissioned a second rail transfer terminal in Banksmeadow to serve Sydney’s central and southern Councils, and thereby increased capacity at Woodlawn to over 1m tonnes per annum, together with the Mechanical Biological Treatment Facility to process municipal waste under contract with Councils, reducing tonnages to landfill and recovering the organic content from waste to produce a compost for mine site rehabilitation.

The facility is still recognised, 14 years later, as an example of best practice in municipal waste management and utilisation of leading landfill technology. Since opening in 2004, over 7 million tonnes of waste have been processed at the facility, most of which has been used to generate green electricity. The latest figures published by Veolia in September 2017 reveal that there will be sufficient power generation capability at full capacity to meet the energy requirements of up to 30,000 homes.

It is understood that for every megawatt of power produced by the Woodlawn Bioreactor, approximately 0.75 tonnes of physical waste will be recovered in the form of methane gas to be used for electricity generation. Therefore, for every tonne of waste deposited at the facility 1.33 megawatt/hour of clean electricity can be produced and used to power the facility, businesses, homes and local infrastructure.

The Woodlawn facility has prioritised sustainable and innovative waste management practices including:

  • 7 Biogas engines that generate up to 7 megawatts of clean energy from what would otherwise be gas-emitting waste material.
  • Agriculture incorporating a working farm that applies nutrient rich compost, produced from Sydney waste, to soils where proven beneficial outcomes are achieved.
  • Aquaculture and horticulture capturing waste heat from energy production and using it for fish farming and hydroponic horticulture.
  • Mechanical and Biological Treatment (MBT) extracting organic content from the waste to produce compost for environmental rehabilitation.
  • Windfarm (operated by Infigen Energy) that harnesses 48.3 megawatts of clean energy per year.
  • Solarfarm utilising increased sun exposure from cleared land to produces 2.5 megawatts of clean energy per year.