The new Waterloo Metro Station has finished construction, marking the first time in five years that Sydney has received a new train station. 

It comes as the New South Wales Government takes another step forward in addressing the state’s housing crisis, with the topping out of a nine-storey building with 70 social homes as part of the Waterloo Metro Quarter development above the new station. The topping out marks construction of this building reaching its highest point.

Nearly 19,000 passengers are expected to use the state-of-the-art Waterloo Station each day when it opens.

Waterloo Station is the first of six new world-class stations on the City Metro line to be completed, and the remaining five are following close behind.

When City Metro services begin in coming months, Waterloo will provide fast, safe and reliable journeys to Central in two minutes, Barangaroo in eight minutes and to Victoria Cross in North Sydney in eleven minutes.

There are several further steps before the official opening of the Sydney Metro City & Southwest later in 2024. These include approval from the Office of the National Rail Safety Regulator, the handover of the line and all stations to the operator, and a period of full trial running. The State Government said that these milestones are all on schedule.

The Waterloo Renewal Project is a major redevelopment that will transform the estate into a modern, sustainable and vibrant community with a mix of social, affordable and private housing, as well as retail, community facilities and public open spaces.

In 2023, the New South Wales Government increased the number of new social and affordable homes being delivered as part of the renewal of Waterloo South estate from 34 per cent to 50 per cent, resulting in an uplift of up to 500 homes.

Construction of the social housing building in the Waterloo Metro Quarter started in mid-2023 and is due to be completed in 2025. It will feature 70 social housing units, community room, rooftop garden and internal bike storage.

Existing Waterloo South social housing tenants will be given an opportunity to relocate here, allowing residents to stay in their local area while the renewal development is underway.

The Waterloo Metro Quarter development above the new Sydney Metro station will include 220 social, affordable and private residential homes. It will also feature student accommodation, retail outlets and commercial space across four buildings, along with public open space and a car park.

The Waterloo Metro Quarter development will provide well-located apartments near well-connected transport infrastructure, giving people a place to call home where they can move around the city easier.

New South Wales Premier, Chris Minns, said that this is an important milestone for Sydney Metro. 

“This is a good example of what happens when we link the provision of housing and public transport. Everybody wins,” Mr Minns said. 

“More homes close to our train stations means we’ll have better connected communities.

“This is a great example of revitalising an inner-city community and incorporating housing and public transport.”

New South Wales Minister for Transport, Jo Haylen, said that the government is taking a huge step towards opening the next stage of Metro, which is just around the corner and will see tens of thousands of people using these new stations and enjoying faster connections.

“This mega station will be a game-changer for Waterloo, Redfern and Alexandria and significantly reduce traffic on our inner-city roads, while alleviating pressure at nearby Redfern and Green Square stations,” Ms Haylen said. 

“It took more than 5,000 people five million work hours – more than four years – to complete the new station, including excavation of 330,000t of material.

“This is a striking station with a design that honours Aboriginal heritage and pays homage to Waterloo’s history. Its 170m-long platforms will receive a lightning-fast train every four minutes in the peak.”

New South Wales Minister for Housing, Rose Jackson, said that Waterloo Estate is one of the state’s largest ever social housing renewals. 

“This construction milestone at Waterloo Metro Quarter is just the start of more social and affordable homes to come in this area,” Ms Jackson said. 

“As part of the renewal, we have boosted the number of social and affordable housing in Waterloo South to 50 per cent delivering approximately 1,500 to those in need. We know housing plays a critical role in outcomes for Aboriginal communities, so we’re dedicating a minimum of 15 per cent of all new social and affordable homes for Aboriginal people to keep communities connected and work towards closing the housing gap.

“Tenants deserve to be with us every step of the journey, which is why we will continue to ramp up efforts to be out and about in the community, and I want to thank people for their patience.”

Image: chinasong/shutterstock.com

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