The Andrews Labor Government’s signature infrastructure project, the Metro Tunnel, will benefit from the construction expertise of the largest and most expensive transport project in the United States.
In a rare glimpse of New York City’s East Side Access project, Premier Daniel Andrews went around 45 metres below the streets of midtown Manhattan to inspect progress on the 9.65km tunnel connecting Grand Central Station to the Long Island Rail Road – the busiest commuter rail network in America.
The entire East Side Access project includes 13 kilometres of tunnelling under the East River in New York and will reduce daily commute times by up to 40 minutes.
The Premier was joined by Dr Michael Horodniceanu, President of the project arm of New York City’s Metropolitan Transport Authority, and the Co-ordinator General of Victoria’s Major Transport Program, Corey Hannett.
The East Side Access project has encountered significant challenges; encountering 350 million year-old rock during the tunnelling.
The underground tour was a unique opportunity to learn from the experiences of New York City and gain valuable insights for Victoria’s Metro Tunnel Project.
The Premier also announced that Dr Horodniceanu has accepted an invitation to visit Victoria later this year, providing further advice and support ahead of major construction starting in 2018.
The Labor Government fully funded the Metro Tunnel in the Victorian Budget 2016/17 – a project that will create 3,700 Victorian jobs.
The project will take our busiest trains lines through new 9km tunnels, relieving congestion in the City Loop and allowing us to run more trains in and out of the city every day.
It will deliver five new state-of-the-art underground stations, with two new CBD stations directly connected to Flinders Street and Melbourne Central stations.
Quotes attributable to Premier Daniel Andrews
“Construction of New York City’s massive East Side Access Project hasn’t been easy, but that’s exactly why Victoria should learn from its challenges and how engineers were able to overcome them.”
“The East Side Access project has already been underway for nine years and is the biggest infrastructure in the USA and now its leader is coming to Melbourne to make sure the Metro Tunnel is just as good.”
“This is all about jobs and making sure that the world’s most liveable city has a truly world-class public transport system.”
Quotes attributable to Dr Michael Horodniceanu
“There is no project of this magnitude that is without problems that’s why you have engineers to overcome them, like everything else I imagine Melbourne will have challenges, but they will be overcome carefully and thoughtfully.”
Quotes attributable to Co-ordinator General of Victoria’s Major Transport Program Corey Hannett
“The methodology around how we connect the underground stations to the existing ones is a key part of the project so I’m keen to spend more time with Dr Horodniceanu later this year to go through that.”