Travel times between Parramatta and the Sydney CBD are expected to be slashed in half as construction efforts on the new Metro West rail line are set to begin next year.
NSW Premier Gladys Berejiklian said the decision to bring forward construction was only possible because of the strong economic management of the NSW Liberals and Nationals government.
“We always said we would build Metro West as fast as possible and today’s announcement shows we mean business,” Ms Berejiklian said.
“We have worked our guts out to get the budget in a strong position and now we are able to deliver crucial rail projects like Metro West quicker than anyone thought was possible.
“Metro West will more than double the existing rail capacity between Parramatta and the Sydney CBD and only the NSW Liberals and Natonals Government can be trusted to make it a reality.”
The NSW Labor opposition has promised $5 billion towards the project, with another $3 billion from the federal government if Bill Shorten wins the May election.
NSW Labor leader Michael Daley said he would complete the project, which will run from the CBD to Sydney’s west, faster than the government. But Transport Minister Andrew Constance said there was no way Labor could build the metro any faster.
The Premier and Mr Constance announced the Coalition would inject $6.4 billion into the transport infrastructure project which was expected to reduce travel times to 20 minutes, with trains running every two minutes.
“This is more than Labor is providing. Our funding is locked in. Labor is relying on billions of dollars of imaginary federal funding,” Mr Constance said.
New stations will be built at Westmead, Parramatta, Sydney Olympic Park, North Strathfield, Burwood North, Five Dock, The Bays Precinct and the City.
The government is continuing to investigate whether stations between Olympic Park and Parramatta such as Rydalmere and Pyrmont will be possible.
Transport Minister said Labor took a swipe at the Labor government claiming they can’t be trusted to deliver major infrastructure projects.
“During its time in office Labor promised to build 12 rail lines, but did not deliver a single one in full,” Mr Constance said.
“In fact Labor has promised a metro to Western Sydney three times since the mid-90s and cancelled it every time. In 2010, they were so incompetent they handed $81 million back to the Federal Government after cancelling it once again.
“Metro North West will open in May and construction is underway on Sydney Metro City and South West.”
Metro West is expected to take eight years to complete from the beginning of construction.
— With AAP