Community consultation is about to commence on the $235 million North East Line upgrade Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Infrastructure and Transport Michael McCormack and Victorian Minister for Public Transport and Major Projects Jacinta Allan said today.
Mr McCormack said the North East line steering committee, chaired by Transport for Victoria, met this week with partners including the ARTC, V/Line, Public Transport Victoria, Rail Projects Victoria and VicTrack, with discussions continuing to be productive between all parties.
“The Committee is finalising the scope of works and delivery schedule, which will include an independent review of the works by Monash University, to provide further rigour and assurance that the scope will deliver on the Commonwealth’s $235 million commitment to upgrade the line to achieve Victorian Class 2 standard performance,” Mr McCormack said.
“This will support the running of new modern trains on the line which the Victorian Government has committed to delivering.
“Community consultation on the works will begin in less than a fortnight, with the ARTC and Transport for Victoria to present at the upcoming Hume Corridor Passenger group meeting on Thursday 24 May to provide an update on the North East Rail Line project.”
Consultation will continue for several weeks in the lead up to the release of the delivery schedule.
Mr McCormack said community engagement was essential in the project’s delivery and said the Committee was committed to hearing from community leaders and other key stakeholders to finalise the upcoming schedule of community engagement.
“Separate to the North East Victorian line upgrade, I am also pleased to advise the ARTC are investing in additional track tamping works throughout May and June to improve V/Line passenger service performance.”
Victorian Minister for Public Transport Jacinta Allan welcomed the progress made by the steering committee and the cooperation with the ARTC to consider options to improve the immediate passenger experience.
“With several train faults, delays and cancellations over a number of months, the Victorian Government has also asked V/Line to review the causes and provide advice on what steps needed to be taken to provide a better service for both passengers and staff,” Ms Allan said.
“There are a range of factors that contribute to poor V/Line performance such as track condition, signalling faults, passenger delays and rolling stock maintenance. This data is also being used to inform and prioritise the scope of works and the delivery schedule for the North East Line project.
“It’s great to see community consultation commencing and agencies working together on what we can do now to provide a better passenger experience.
“Once we have the scope and schedule of works finalised, the Victorian Government will know the timeframe for new trains to be ready on the upgraded track.”
The North East Line upgrade is part of the $1.7 billion Regional Rail Revival program. For more information visit www.regionalrailrevival.vic.gov.au