Victoria’s biggest ever public transport project the Metro Tunnel is on track to open a year earlier than expected.
The Andrews Labor Government today released the $6 billion ‘Tunnel and Stations’ PPP contract, which reveals the project is on track to be complete by the end of 2025, with new High Capacity Metro Trains running through the Metro Tunnel a year ahead of schedule.
Final contracts were signed in December with the Cross Yarra Partnership – a consortium led by Lendlease Engineering, John Holland Bouygues Construction and Capella Capital.
The Metro Tunnel will untangle the City Loop by taking three of Melbourne’s busiest train lines – Cranbourne, Pakenham and Sunbury – out of the Loop and running them through the new tunnel, creating space for more trains, more often across the network.
The contract outlines that that tunnels and stations will be complete in September 2024, which will allow the track and signalling work to connect the tunnels to the existing rail corridors to be complete by the end of 2025.
Whilst the project is ahead of schedule, there will be challenges to be managed to ensure the project is completed safely and on time.
Last week, St Kilda Road was reduced to one lane of traffic between Kings Way and Dorcas Street and from tomorrow Grattan Street will close in both directions for up to five years so the new Parkville Station can be built.
The Metro Tunnel project will create 7,000 jobs for Victorians, including 791 apprentices, trainees and engineering cadets working as part of the Tunnels and Stations package.
The Labor Government has already created more than 3,500 opportunities for apprentices, trainees and cadets to work on Victoria’s biggest projects and give them the valuable on-the-job training to further their careers.
Nearly 800 apprentices, trainees and cadets are working right now across 25 major projects. On the Metro Tunnel, they’ve clocked up 69,000 hours and are expected to complete 1.2 million hours on the project.
Quotes attributable to Premier Daniel Andrews
“The Metro Tunnel is ahead of schedule, creating thousands of jobs and giving hundreds of apprentices a head start on their careers.”
“This project will create space to run more trains, more often, right across Melbourne. We’re getting it done.”
Quote attributable to Minister for Public Transport Jacinta Allan
“The biggest risk to this project is the Victorian Liberals who have said they will renegotiate this contract – delaying the project for years, costing billions and stopping more trains running more often.”
Quote attributable to Minister for Industry and Employment Ben Carroll
“We’re making sure Victorian apprentices, trainees and engineering cadets reap the benefits of our massive pipeline of major projects like the Metro Tunnel which are putting local jobs and businesses first.”