CONSULTATION STARTS ON A CORRIDOR FOR SOUTH WEST RAIL LINK EXTENSION TO THE AIRPORT

CONSULTATION STARTS ON A CORRIDOR FOR SOUTH WEST RAIL LINK EXTENSION TO THE AIRPORT

SOUTH WEST RAIL LINK EXTENSIONMinster for Transport Gladys Berejiklian today announced the NSW Government has started work to set aside a future corridor for a South West Rail Link extension to Sydney’s Second airport, with community consultation set to begin this week.

Ms Berejiklian said the future rail corridor will link jobs, service hubs and communities in the South West with Sydney’s existing and future public transport and roads networks.

“To begin with – when the airport’s air traffic will be less than 10 per cent of that at Sydney Airport – access to the second Sydney airport will be provided through road upgrades, park and ride facilities and public transport services including new express buses,” she said.

“Melbourne International Airport is a perfect example of a major airport with significant public transport demands that are met by a fleet of express buses. Likewise, Perth, Canberra and Hobart airports rely on buses for their public transport needs.”

Initial projections show a Badgerys Creek airport will carry about three million passengers a year – comparable with Canberra and Hobart and well below the passenger figures of Perth (about 13 million passengers a year) and Melbourne International Airport (about 30 million passengers a year).

“Longer term, we are putting plans in place to make sure Sydney’s rail network will connect Badgerys Creek airport with the rapidly-growing communities that will rely on it,” Ms Berejiklian said.

“The NSW Government has started planning for a continuation of the South West Rail Link to extend to Badgerys Creek and on to St Marys, where it would connect with Western Line services, as well as south to Narellan.

“The South West Rail Link is due to open in 2015 – one year ahead of schedule and $100 million below the $2.1 billion budget.

“This work isn’t just about servicing an airport, it’s about servicing Western Sydney communities with appropriate transport links, now and into the future.

“We’ve seen previous growth centres of Sydney let down by insufficient transport planning by previous governments and we’re not making that mistake in greater South West Sydney.

“This corridor planning means when the time comes to extend the South West Rail Link we will be ready to go, and costs will be lower.

“One of the reasons the North West Rail Link costs what it does is that the corridor wasn’t preserved – we can’t allow that mistake to happen again for future transport projects.”

Consultation on the future of the South West Rail Link corridor extension will begin this week and include two stages:

· Stage 1 – Consultation on the proposed corridor and station locations will start on 28 April and will run for six weeks to 6 June 2014.

· Stage 2 – Consultation on specific alignment options will follow later in 2014.

Transport for NSW will hold community information sessions during the first phase of consultation. All interested parties are encouraged to drop in to one of the sessions to find out more information and provide their feedback.

Details of community information sessions will be widely advertised. For more information visit www.transport.nsw.gov.au/projects-swrl-extension-corridor-protection

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