NSW Government invests billions in transport infrastructure

The NSW Government is investing $14.4 billion in the Budget 2018-19 into public transport and infrastructure, including funding for the Western Metro, Parramatta Light Rail and the Transport Access Program.

Minister for Transport and Infrastructure, Andrew Constance, said 2018-19 will see a massive step in the transformation of public transport in Sydney with passenger services commencing on the new Sydney Metro Northwest in the first half of 2019.

Australia’s first automated trains will provide customers with a new, world-class rail service between the north west of Sydney and Chatswood.

“In addition to reserving an initial $3 billion for Metro West, the NSW Budget 2018 includes a total of $4.3 billion for the Sydney Metro network, including $1.9 billion to continue building Sydney Metro City and Southwest, $2.4 billion to complete Sydney Metro Northwest,” Mr Constance said.

“The Budget includes $258 million to start construction of Parramatta Light Rail stage one, to connect the Parramatta CBD with places being transformed across the region, including the Westmead health precinct. A further $20 million is budgeted for planning Parramatta Light Rail stage two which will run north of the Parramatta River and link to Sydney Olympic Park.

“There’s also $110 million to deliver Newcastle Light Rail, which will see high capacity, frequent services commence through the Newcastle city centre in 2019, supporting precinct development.”

Mr Constance said that as well as building new and enhanced transport networks, the Budget is also focussed on continuing to deliver fleet enhancements, including $496 million to continue delivering the New Intercity Fleet for Central Coast, Newcastle, Blue Mountains and Illawarra customers, over $400 million for new trains to service the Sydney Trains network, and $179 million to purchase new buses to accommodate growth in NSW bus services and to replace old buses.

“We’re starting a rail tech revolution with $880 million committed for digital systems on the rail network to replace legacy signalling and train control with modern, intelligent systems that will improve service reliability and the network’s ability to recover after major incidents.

“These funds will also be used to plan for the initial stages of capacity improvements for the T4 Eastern Suburbs and Illawarra and T8 Airport and South lines that will boost frequency on these critical suburban rail lines.”

The Budget also includes $133 million for the Transport Access Program to continue to make more transport services accessible, with upgrades like lifts, escalators and ramps to stations and wharves to make it easier for people with limited mobility and parents with prams.

Regional public transport customers will benefit from a $31 million investment to continue procurement of a new regional rail fleet and maintenance facility to replace the aging XPT, XPLORER and Endeavour trains, and create more comfortable and more reliable services for customers travelling long distances.

Sydney-Parramatta Metro West Project

The NSW Government is pushing ahead with the Western Metro, reserving an initial $3 billion for the game changing project and investing $28 million in the NSW Budget 2018-19 to accelerate the completion of the final business case to get on with the next stage.

Premier, Gladys Berejiklian, said that this project would be a legacy for generations of Sydney commuters.

“Sydney Metro West will be our city’s next big underground metro railway – a new, easy link between Sydney CBD and Parramatta – and we’re getting on with the job as quickly as possible,” Ms Berejiklian said.

The funding will allow Sydney Metro to start:

  • Designing new metro railway stations and precincts to get the best outcomes for customers and communities
  • The planning approvals process, continuing the community and industry consultation that has been taking place

Treasurer, Dominic Perrottet, said that Sydney Metro West will be a landmark project and that the funding was a step towards this new link between the Sydney CBD and Parramatta.

“The Sydney CBD and Parramatta are two great economies and reserving this funding means we are bringing forward the work, subject to an accelerated business case, to better connect these two cities,” Mr Perrottet said.

Mr Constance confirmed that Sydney Metro West will link the Sydney CBD with Parramatta and Westmead via The Bays Precinct and Sydney Olympic Park, and that work was underway to determine other stations along the route

“This massive investment in Sydney’s future will make it faster and easier to get around our great global city,” Mr Constance said.

“This project will redefine how we get around Sydney and will double rail capacity between the two city centres, a true city-shaping infrastructure investment that will serve generations to come.

“We have already begun the work to determine the best underground route between the Sydney CBD and Greater Parramatta with a program of geotechnical drilling, which will continue.”

The most recent round of community consultation saw 1200 people give their feedback on the project, with further opportunities for consultation later in 2018.

Subject to the final business case the NSW Government intends to start construction on Sydney Metro West in the next term of government.

Underscoring the government’s record on delivering Metro projects, the first stage of Sydney Metro will be opening in the first half of 2019 with the Sydney Metro North West project from Rouse Hill to Chatswood.

Construction is also already underway to extend the Metro into the Sydney CBD and beyond to Bankstown, to open in 2024 – when Sydney will have 31 metro stations and a new 66-km metro railway system.

Minister for Roads, Maritime and Freight, Melinda Pavey, said the NSW Budget 2018-19 showcases the State Government’s strong financial management with an overall investment of $9.1 billion to continue building and improving our road, maritime and freight infrastructure.

“Never before has NSW seen such investment in bold infrastructure. It’s a clear sign of our economic strength in being able to deliver more jobs, improve efficiency and provide benefits to consumers at the till,” Ms Pavey said.

“From the city to the bush, we’re sharing the wealth so all regions continue to thrive. We will seal all highways in the regions, making our roads safer and more resilient, while at the same time addressing pinch points in urban areas to improve traffic flow and ease congestion.

“We are also investing in our freight network through the fixing country rail and road initiatives, which allows the movement of more than $200 billion worth of products such as whitegoods and grain throughout the state.    

“We are delivering substantial benefits allowing commuters to spend less time in traffic and more time doing things they love.”

The 2018-19 NSW Budget commits additional funds for:

  • Road safety – a $600 million boost brings the total allocation to $1.9 billion over five years to improve road safety in NSW, including targeted safety infrastructure upgrades as well as enhanced enforcement
  • Heathcote Road – $173 million towards upgrading the Woronora River bridge and widening between Hammondville and Voyager Point
  • Nowra Bridge – $155 million reserved to match Australian Government funding and enable a new Princes Highway bridge to be built across the Shoalhaven River
  • Henry Lawson Drive – $100 million for widening between the M5 Motorway and Milperra Road
  • Sealing Country Roads – an additional $40 million will allow initial sealing of the last two unsealed State Highways in NSW – the Cobb and Silver City Highways – to be completed by 2023

Other public transport and infrastructure highlights in the 2018-19 NSW Budget include:

  • $1.5 billion to maintain the Sydney Trains and NSW TrainLink Intercity networks, helping make journeys more reliable and facilitating rail freight movement through the state’s busiest rail corridors
  • $1.2 billion for public transport concessions including pensioners, seniors, people with disabilities and the school student transport scheme
  • $137 million for the Northern Beaches B-Line, with infrastructure improvements along the route between Mona Vale and the Sydney CBD to further improve reliability
  • $132 million toward the Central Walk project, a new underground pedestrian concourse at Central Station to better connect customers to trains, light rail and new Sydney Metro underground platforms
  • $87 million for Community Transport and Home and Community Care services to help people across the state who have difficulties accessing transport
  • Funding for planning of additional commuter car parking at Leppington, Edmondson Park, Engadine and Schofields
  • $1.8 billion for the new Westconnex motorway with the M4 East Tunnel opening in first half of 2019
  • $1.7 billion for maintenance of road, maritime and freight assets
  • $1.2 billion to continue the NSW and Australian Government funded Pacific Highway upgrade, including planning and preconstruction for the Coffs Harbour Bypass
  • $439 million for the NSW and Australian Government funded Western Sydney Infrastructure Plan which is providing upgrades of key routes from Liverpool, Penrith and Campbelltown to access to the new Western Sydney Airport
  • $334 million for established Sydney roads, including upgrades to Heathcote Road, Henry Lawson Drive and King Georges Road
  • $281 million for easing congestion at pinch points across Sydney, including upgrades around Sydney Airport and the M4 Smart Motorway
  • $244 million for the Princes Highway, allowing construction to commence on the Albion Park Rail Bypass, Berry to Bomaderry upgrade and the replacement bridge at Batemans Bay
  • $178 million to continue planning and preconstruction for the F6 extension stage one, Western Harbour Tunnel, Beaches Link and Sydney Gateway
  • $165 million for Central Coast roads, including widening the Pacific Motorway and upgrading the Empire Bay Drive intersection with The Scenic Road and Cochrone Street at Kincumber
  • $168 million investment in maritime improvements across NSW for commercial and recreational fishers and boaters
  • $119 million for road freight safety and productivity in regional New South Wales
  • $87 million on Freight Rail infrastructure upgrades, including the Fixing Country Rail program designed to enhance rail infrastructure and eliminate connectivity constraints affecting regional freight services
  • $84 million for the New England Highway, including the Scone bypass and the Bolivia Hill upgrade between Glen Innes and Tenterfield
  • $81 million for Bridges for the Bush, allowing construction of new bridges to commence at Gunnedah, Barrington and on Nerriga Road near Braidwood
  • $62 million for the Newell Highway, including fast tracking the delivery of overtaking lanes through an innovative contract approach and planning for the new Dubbo bridge
  • $55 million for upgrades to Hunter roads, including completion of the intersection upgrade where the M1 Motorway meets John Renshaw Drive and Weakleys Drive

Minister for Roads, Maritime and Freight, Melinda Pavey, said, “NSW Budget 2018 represents the largest dedicated investment in road safety, enabling us to deliver further road safety upgrades and initiatives to save lives and reduce serious injuries on our roads.”

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