ARRB has officially extended its research and expertise across all modes of transport with the launch of the National Transport Research Organisation (NTRO) for Australia and New Zealand.
NTRO was launched on December 1 in Melbourne, with more than 250 people from across the industry attending. The NTRO will create the new knowledge that will be used to provide world’s best practice across all modes of transport – road, rail, ports and airports – for Australia and New Zealand.
ARRB has more than 60 years’ experience in the road space which will underpin the new NTRO entity, and will continue to lead the way in road research. But ARRB has been transformed over the past five years to have a genuine focus across all modes of transport, at the same time that Australia and New Zealand’s road agencies have transformed themselves into transport agencies with a holistic view of movement.
The Australasian Centre for Rail Innovation (ACRI) formally became part of ARRB in mid-2022, and will lead the NTRO’s rail focus. NTRO Ports and NTRO Airports have also been established for those disciplines.
“NTRO will truly be the one source of truth for Australia and New Zealand Governments and the private sector, delivering solutions to the transport challenges of tomorrow and genuinely shaping our transport future,” ARRB and NTRO Chief Executive Officer Michael Caltabiano told the launch at the National Transport Research Centre in Fishermans Bend – home of the NTRO and ARRB head office.
“NTRO’s vision is to enable transport agencies to give effect to that change, by providing that central portal for innovation in Australia and New Zealand. It’s a big vision, and a pretty lofty goal – but we’re up for it.”
As well as its Melbourne headquarters, the NTRO also has offices in Brisbane, Sydney, Canberra, Adelaide, and Perth. This makes the organisation truly national and reflective of a mode-agnostic road, rail, ports and airports organisation.
Leaders from around the transport industry attended the function, including Victorian Department of Transport secretary Paul Younis and Australian Local Government Association (ALGA) chief executive Matt Pinnegar, who were among the guest speakers at the launch function. ARRB’s transition to the NTRO signals an evolution from a roads-focused entity to one encompassing Australia’s entire transport network. As well as the many innovative projects ACRI is involved with, ARRB’s Infrastructure Measurement team is already working in the airports space. It is involved in surveying airport runways around Australia, including many in Western Australia.