Construction has begun on Perth’s $1.96 billion Forrestfield-Airport Link (FAL) project which will connect Perth’s eastern suburbs to the CBD.
The FAL project will create an 8.5km rail line, from a spur on the Midland Line east of Bayswater Station, largely underground to Dundas Road in Forrestfield.
It will include three new train stations, including two underground at Belmont (near Brearley Avenue) and Airport Central (Perth Airport T1/T2) and another aboveground at Forrestfield.
Western Australian Premier, Colin Barnett, said the FAL will provide a much-needed 20-minute public transport link between Perth’s CBD and the eastern suburbs, and will service future projected growth of residential and business developments planned along the rail route.
“It will also create 2,000 new jobs during construction,” Mr Barnett said.
“This project is yet another example of the State Government’s strong record in delivering much-needed large-scale transport infrastructure across the metropolitan area.
“The link will not only benefit people living in the new rail corridor, but will serve airport passengers and tourists alike and will leave a great first impression for visitors to Perth.”
Western Australian Minister for Transport, Bill Marmion, said the FAL was expected to generate an estimated 20,000 daily boardings across the rail network.
“Construction of the rail line is an important step in improving public transport in Perth’s eastern suburbs and reducing congestion in the metropolitan area,” Mr Marmion said.
Preliminary works are underway at the Forrestfield end of the rail line, with relocation of key utilities complete and work set to start on the construction of the ‘dive structure’ or entry points to the rail tunnels before the end of 2016.
Two tunnel boring machines will arrive from Germany in mid-2017, when drilling is expected to start.
Federal Minister for Urban Infrastructure, Paul Fletcher, said the FAL would enhance the economic benefits of the airport by improving access to the CBD for visitors to Perth.
“Supporting projects that provide long-term integrated public transport networks, which help to alleviate urban congestion and strengthen urban renewal opportunities, is a key focus of the Turnbull-Joyce Coalition Government,” Mr Fletcher said.
Federal Minister for Infrastructure and Transport Darren Chester said the FAL would transport people from the airport to the city efficiently – so they could get to work or home quicker.
“The Turnbull-Joyce Coalition Government is investing more than $50 billion in a record investment in infrastructure across Australia, including this vital project here in Perth,” Mr Chester said.
The Forrestfield-Airport Link is expected to be complete in 2020.