Rail projects slashing travel times
The Victorian Government is powering ahead with rail projects right across Victoria – slashing travel times and supporting thousands of jobs.
We’re recruiting nearly 300 new drivers and station staff for day one of the city-shaping Metro Tunnel, following a $58.7 million boost in the Victorian Budget 2022/23.
With the Metro Tunnel a year ahead of schedule, a huge recruitment and training program will ensure the tunnel is ready for passengers when it opens in 2025.
Once complete, five new underground stations will deliver more trains, more often, creating capacity for more than a half a million extra passengers each week during peak times and saving them up to 50 minutes every day.
Metro Tunnel services will also run from Pakenham and Cranbourne through the CBD to the airport when Melbourne Airport Rail opens in 2029.
The Victorian Government is kickstarting investment in the Arden Precinct, to begin the transformation of the area into a busy employment, innovation and residential hub on the doorstep of the CBD. The precinct will provide a connection to the rail network via the new Arden Station, being built as part of the Metro Tunnel project.
Arden will play a leading role in boosting Victoria’s economy, expected to include up to 34,000 jobs and be home to around 15,000 residents by 2050.
The Victorian Government is investing a further $265 million into the state’s unprecedented pipeline of new and upgraded trains and trams – built and maintained in Victoria for Victorians, supporting hundreds of jobs in local manufacturing.
In a boost for regional Victoria, this investment includes 12 brand new VLocity trains for the regional rail network and new stabling facilities at Bairnsdale for VLocity trains on the Gippsland line.
Other improvements include safety upgrades on trams and train stabling facility upgrades at Flemington to support the transition to Metro Tunnel and Melbourne Airport Rail operations.
A further $247.6 million will be invested in Victoria’s regional rail network to keep people and goods moving, including $181 million to maintain rail freight lines and funding to accelerate V/Line’s modernisation, delivering better services to, from and within regional Victoria.
Victorians will experience a more accessible and comfortable public transport network with $157.8 million to plan and deliver accessibility and safety upgrades, including critical CBD tram stop upgrades to provide better connections and access to the Metro Tunnel when it opens.
Suburban and regional train stations will be upgraded, including on the Dandenong and Mernda lines and at Woodend and Warrnambool. The upgrades will include better signage, new passenger shelters, boarding ramps, CCTV, lighting and bicycle parking facilities.
Catching the bus will be more convenient, with $109 million for new and upgraded bus services in key areas including Geelong's growing suburbs, Sunbury, Craigieburn and Kilmore, and upgrades at up to 80 bus stops across the state.
The Government is continuing to support vulnerable children with $847,000 for free 30-day public transport travel passes to ensure they can access schools and other wellbeing services.
Victoria’s unprecedented $90 billion Big Build is supporting our economic rebound, creating tens of thousands of direct and indirect jobs through projects like the Level Crossing Removal Program, the Suburban Rail Loop and the Metro Tunnel.