The Victorian Budget 2021-2022 will invest $986 million to build 25 brand-new X’Trapolis 2.0 trains and the infrastructure they need to modernise the state’s train fleet. The new trains will be built locally, improve the public transport network and create approximately 750 jobs across manufacturing and supply chains.
The Victorian Government has aspirations for the new fleet to be more accessible, reliable and energy efficient.
“We’ve added hundreds of new services to our timetable – and we’re delivering a big pipeline of new trains and trams to support our Big Build projects and support thousands of jobs,” Victorian Minister for Public Transport, Ben Carroll, said.
Designed and manufactured predominantly in Victoria, the trains will provide a boost to the state’s rolling stock manufacturing industry – particularly in regional Victoria, with at least 150 of the new jobs to be based at Alstom’s Ballarat facility.
“These are trains made in Victoria, for Victorians, by Victorians – supporting local jobs at a time we need them most,” Acting Victorian Premier, James Merlino, said.
The Australasian Railway Association (ARA) Chief Executive Officer, Caroline Wilkie, said the new commitment expanded on the State Government’s significant investment in new rollingstock and would ensure a better journey for passengers.
“These new trains will make passengers’ rail journey as easy, comfortable and efficient as possible.
“This is a great opportunity to ensure more trains on the network are accessible for all as older models are retired.
“We look forward to seeing the delivery of new trains that leverage new technologies to improve sustainability outcomes,” Ms Wilkie said.
These trains will also support the gradual retirement of the Comeng fleet – the longest-running trains on the metropolitan network – with the new trains set to run through some of Melbourne’s fastest-growing suburbs along the Craigieburn, Upfield and Frankston lines.
The investment will also upgrade the Craigieburn Train Maintenance Facility, creating space for these modern trains and improving train maintenance – making the fleet more reliable and improving longevity.
Design work is already underway, with manufacturing of the X’Trapolis 2.0 trains to begin in late 2022.
This investment builds on the $1.48 billion investment in last year’s Budget to design, build and maintain 100 brand-new Next Generation trams in Victoria, improving the state’s transport network for all Victorians and supporting more than 1800 jobs at the peak of production.
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