Construction of the Melbourne Airport Rail Link will begin in the next term of a re-elected Andrews Labor Government.
Premier Daniel Andrews has announced that a re-elected Labor Government would provide up to $5 billion towards the construction of the long-awaited project, matching the commitment from the Federal Government.
A route options assessment undertaken by Transport for Victoria has shown that of the four routes considered, the Sunshine alignment – previously known as the Albion East alignment – is the Victorian Government’s preferred route for this congestion-busting project.
The Sunshine Route will see trains travel to the airport from the CBD via a new Sunshine Super Hub, which will connect regional and metro train lines – including the Metro Tunnel – to the new airport link.
This new transport hub will also pave the way for fast regional rail services from Geelong and Ballarat, connected to Melbourne Airport, via just one change.
From Sunshine, trains will head north utilising both the Albion East rail reserve and sections of tunnel to protect homes and businesses, before connecting in to Melbourne Airport.
The rigorous new analysis produced as part of initial work on the Airport Rail Link Business Case shows that the Sunshine Route rated 4.3 out of 5 overall in the comparative analysis of routes, with a total cost in the range of $8-13 billion.
Funding under a re-elected Andrews Labor Government will match funding from the Commonwealth, while private sector contributions will also play a part in the delivery of the project.
The Federal Government was briefed on the outcome of the route options assessment earlier this month and work is underway on the full business case which will be completed by Rail Projects Victoria next year. Construction is set to begin during the next term of a re-elected Andrews Labor Government.