The Authority overseeing Australia’s biggest public transport project – the Metro Tunnel – will now also deliver the Andrews Labor Government’s transformation of the Ballarat line.
Minister for Public Transport Jacinta Allan announced today that a dedicated project team within Melbourne Metro Rail Authority (MMRA) will officially oversee the $518 million Ballarat Line Upgrade.
MMRA has some of Australia’s most experienced rail experts and is perfectly placed to deliver the upgrade, which includes duplication of the line between Deer Park and Melton to run to more frequent and reliable services to Melbourne’s outer western suburbs, Melton, Bacchus Marsh, Ballan and Ballarat.
MMRA is also well placed to deliver the project as the Metro Tunnel and duplication from Deer Park will enable future electrification of the line to Melton – creating a brand new metropolitan train line into the city.
Currently, there is no space on the metropolitan network to run more trains. The Metro Tunnel will create space in the city loop to run more services more often, and a duplicated line will allow for extra services from Deer Park to Melton.
Together, these projects will make electrification to Melton possible, which is why the same expert body – Melbourne Metro Rail Authority – will deliver them both.
The Labor Government’s Ballarat Line Upgrade will also duplicate a three kilometre section of single track west of Warrenheip, build new crossing loops and create new train stabling to support more frequent, reliable services through Melbourne’s west and communities along the Ballarat line.
The upgrade will also build second platforms at Bacchus Marsh and Ballan stations, and the existing platforms at Rockbank Station will be extended so passengers can use each carriage to get on or off the train.
Quotes attributable to Minister for Public Transport Jacinta Allan
“Melbourne Metro Rail Authority is delivering the biggest public transport project in Melbourne, and it will now deliver the biggest project in regional Victoria as well.”
“You can’t electrify to Melton and run more services to the western suburbs and regions without building the Metro Tunnel and duplicating the line – that’s why we’re not wasting a minute and getting it done.”
Quote attributable to Member for Buninyong Geoff Howard
“MMRA has the experience and expertise to deliver these projects and more frequent, reliable trains to Bacchus Marsh, Ballan and Ballarat.”
Quote attributable to Member for Wendouree Sharon Knight
“This is wonderful news for the Ballarat Line Upgrade, which will deliver more frequent, reliable trains – building on the new carriages and services we’ve already delivered for Ballarat commuters.”
Reviewed 19 August 2020