The Australasian Railway Association (ARA) has welcomed $50 million in new funding to kick off Parramatta Light Rail Stage 2 as part of the 2021-22 NSW Budget.
ARA Chief Executive Officer Caroline Wilkie said the funds for development and planning works was an important step forward for the project.
“Today’s announcement provides much needed certainty for this critical project and will ensure the benefits of light rail can be shared by more people in Sydney’s west,” Ms Wilkie said.
“It is pleasing to see the NSW Government further its rail investment to support the state’s long term growth.”
The announcement follows the release of the ARA’s latest research report on light rail last week, which confirmed the transformational impact of light rail projects.
Ms Wilkie said the value of projects like Parramatta Light Rail to the community were wide ranging.
“Light rail projects are uniquely positioned to drive urban renewal and increased land values and can be the launching pad for further development in the community,” Ms Wilkie said.
“Parramatta Light Rail will help unleash that opportunity and provide new opportunities to support sustainable lifestyles in the city’s west.
“It is good to see the community will reap the full benefits of light rail in this next phase of the project.”
The $2.4 billion Parramatta Light Rail Stage 1 due to be completed in 2023, with 50 per cent of tracks expected to be laid by the end of June.
Stage 2 would connect Stage 1 and the Parramatta CBD to Ermington, Melrose Park, Wentworth Point and Sydney Olympic Park.