After duplication in 1890, the original lattice-girder Como Bridge across the Georges River was laid as gauntlet track. This arrangement remained in place for many decades, causing a notorious bottleneck on the line, until the New South Wales Government commissioned John Holland & Co. to build a new bridge in 1969. Construction of the new bridge, made of prestressed concrete box girders, commenced in 1969 and was first used by the 6.17 pm service from Como on 19 November 1972. The old bridge, as well as a former alignment of the line between Mortdale and Oatley replaced in 1905, is now used as a rail trail for pedestrians and cyclists.
The Illawarra Line was the first railway electrified in New South Wales, and was built in conjunction with the construction of the "City Railway" between Central and St James Station, opening on 1 March 1926, a few months before the line was connected to the new underground railway. By November 1926, the electric overhead had passed Sutherland and continued to the branch line constructed to the Royal National Park. The line between Loftus and Waterfall remained unelectrified until the 1980s and was serviced by steam and then diesel railcars. With the construction of the Eastern Suburbs Line in 1979, however, the Government decided to continue electrification to Wollongong, and the wires were extended to Waterfall on 20 July 1980 and on to Wollongong in 1984
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