The Australasian Railway Association (ARA) urges the Victorian and Commonwealth Governments to work together to reach agreement on the route and configuration of the Melbourne Airport Rail Link to Melbourne’s CBD through Sunshine.
“With Melbourne forecast to become Australia’s biggest city by 2028, and also the expected increase in international and interstate travellers, it is crucial that the Airport rail link can manage frequent and fast journey times to deliver the level of service expected of an international city,” said ARA Chair, Danny Broad.
Both Governments have each committed $5 billion for the project but differences remain on whether to construct a standalone tunnel and tracks or to use the Melbourne Metro Tunnel and existing above-ground tracks.
“Infrastructure Australia has long-ago already identified the corridor between Melbourne CBD and the Melbourne Airport as one of the most congested and one where the Tullamarine Freeway is already at capacity,” he said.
“We need visionary thinking from our elected leaders to ensure the infrastructure we build for the future meets customers’ expectations, is efficient and delivers adequate capacity for the population growth that Melbourne will undergo.”
“And if financing is an issue, then Governments should look to the private sector for additional investment.”
“Given the complexity of integrating multiple proposals involving Sunshine’s role as a super- hub and including the Geelong and Ballarat lines, the Geelong Fast Rail, the Western Rail Plan and the Airport Rail Link, it is even more important that the Victorian and Commonwealth Governments are able to put aside partisan political interests and work cooperatively to resolve the planning and financial issues and deliver this nation-building project,” he concluded.