The Victorian Government has ordered 18 VLocity trains to be built in Dandenong, an announcement that’s been welcomed by the rail industry.
The Australasian Railway Association (ARA) welcomed the confirmation that Bombardier would build the trains at its Dandenong train and tram manufacturing facility, using 69 per cent local content, supporting 100 direct manufacturing jobs and hundreds more thorough the local supply chain.
ARA Chief Executive Officer, Caroline Wilkie, said the announcement confirmed the significant capability that existed in the Australian industry, and said the right policy settings would enable the industry to grow even more in the future.
“The Victorian Government has recognised the outstanding quality delivered by businesses operating right here in Australia in making this decision,” Ms Wilkie said.
“Rail contractors and manufacturers are actively looking to increase their use of Australian businesses in the wake of the pandemic and these projects provide new opportunities for them to do so.
“It is great to see Bombardier awarded a contract that will deliver trains locally to support the smooth operation of the Victorian regional rail network for years to come.”
Ms Wilkie said additional features such as mobile phone signal boosters, built in USB chargers, catering facilities and dedicated accessibility features demonstrated the Australian industry’s ability to deliver high quality outcomes to improve the passenger experience.
Ms Wilkie said even further benefits could be realised nationally if state governments worked together to create a nationally consistent approach to rail procurement.
“This is an outstanding example of the jobs, innovation and opportunity contracts like these can create for communities like Dandenong,” Ms Wilkie said.
“A nationally consistent approach would provide even greater scale for the industry and extend those benefits further.”
The ARA released its tendering framework in early 2020, calling for more effective, nationally consistent procurement processes to support the growth of the industry.