A historic agreement was announced over the weekend between the Australian and Victorian Governments to fund a new Melbourne Airport Rail Link.
The route for the project will connect Victoria’s regional and metropolitan rail networks to the airport, meaning it will take travellers into the heart of the CBD in less than 30 minutes.
Currently, for regional commuters, it takes multiple train changes to get to Melbourne Airport. However, from 2029 Victorians will be able to catch a train directly from the CBD to the airport without changing trains.
This also means tourists arriving at Melbourne’s Airport will have a hassle-free way of travelling through regional Victoria, hopefully increasing jobs and visitors to the outer regions.
The Melbourne Airport Rail will use the new fleet of High Capacity Metro Trains to run through Metro Tunnels.
The Melbourne Airport Rail will be based on a 10-minute turn-up-and-go structure, running trains from Melbourne Airport through the city and along key sites including Melbourne University, the Parkville medical precinct, Melbourne Central, Flinders Street stations and St Kilda Road business precinct. All city loop trains will connect to airport trains at Flinders Street and Melbourne Central.
Melbourne’s west will have direct airport access via a single interchange at Sunshine Station or Footscray Station for Werribee and Williamstown line passengers.
For regional centres like Geelong, Ballarat and Bendigo, passengers travelling to the airport will also only need commute via a single interchange at Sunshine Station.
However, passengers travelling from Gippsland will connect via a single interchange at a choice of locations along the Cranbourne and Pakenham line.
Prime Minister, Scott Morrison announced the project along with Premier Daniel Andrews.
“The airport link is a nationally significant project, and Victorians have been waiting a long time for it to become a reality. With construction to start in 2022, the agreement will support up to 8,000 jobs during construction,” the Prime Minister said.
“When complete, the link will slash travel times, bust congestion and be a major boost to the economy.”
Premier Daniel Andrews continued by saying this project will be historic for all Victorians.
“This project has been talked about for a long time, its key to our recovery and this design means it will benefit all Victorians,” Mr Andrews said.
“As we continue our recovery, we need a long-term plan. We need a pipeline of jobs for Victorians looking for work now, and for those who will need jobs in the future. We said we’d deliver this project, and we’re keeping our promise.”
Detailed planning and development work for the Melbourne Airport Rail Link is currently underway, which will inform more detailed cost estimates of the full project.
Construction will begin in 2022 with a target completion date of 2029 subject to business cases and relevant Victorian and Federal planning, environmental and government approvals.
Source: Media Release
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