The federal government's $10 billion inland rail project is set to face a parliamentary inquiry into its management and route.
Labor on Tuesday clinched support to refer the 1700km Brisbane to Melbourne freight line to the Senate's regional affairs committee.
Government minister Jonathon Duniam said after 100 years of discussion construction on the project was under way.
"The project would generate both an economic and broader return to the Australian people," he told parliament.
He said the government was confident it had the right route based on multiple studies and consultation with affected landholders.
Australian Associated Press