The 2015-16 Victorian Budget contains the biggest investment in public transport in Victoria’s history, with almost $20 billion worth of major transport infrastructure to get people home to their families safer and sooner.
The Budget lays the foundations for a public transport system able to move millions more people as Victoria grows into Australia’s most populous state.
The Andrews Labor Government’s first Budget commits up to $2.4 billion to kick start the removal of 50 of Victoria’s most dangerous and congested level crossings and $1.5 billion for planning, design and significant early works on the Melbourne Metro Rail Project.
As announced this week, $2 billion will go towards new trains, trams and jobs for Victoria including:
- $1.3 billion for 37 new, high-capacity metropolitan trains with a 50 per cent local content requirement.
- $274 million for 20 new E-Class trams to be built in Dandenong and associated network upgrades.
- $257 million for 21 new VLocity regional carriages also to be built in Dandenong.
- $90 million for the five new X’Trapolis trains to be built in Ballarat.
- $75 million to extend the life of more than 70 Comeng trains in the existing metropolitan fleet.
- $21 million to commence the refurbishment of the B-Class Tram fleet.
$55.6 million is also provided for Stage 1 of Victoria’s first trial of High-Capacity Signalling, which will roll out on the Sandringham line.
The Budget includes $50 million to trial Homesafe – a plan for all night public transport on weekends, to begin on 1 January next year, that will get shift workers and late night travellers home safely.
Catching a bus around Melbourne will be easier and more convenient, with $100 million in the Budget for bus upgrades. This includes improved bus services to universities including La Trobe, Deakin, and Melbourne University.
Monash University will benefit from a $5 million investment to upgrade the Huntingdale Bus interchange, as well as $2.6 million for car parking improvements.
The parking allocation is part of a $18.8 million road and rail minor works fund, which will pay for critical maintenance and improvements to the transport network.
The Budget also includes:
- $50.5 million to upgrade 52 level crossings in regional Victoria.
- Up to $220 million for the Murray Basin Rail Project once the business case is finalised, which is expected to occur in coming months. $30 million was fast-tracked in February to get work started.
- $13.1 million to upgrade the Frankston Station precinct, with $50 million to be made available in subsequent budgets once the business case is finalised.
- $9 million for planning and preparation of the business case for the Mernda Rail Link, with the remaining funds being made available in future Budgets.
- $4 million for the Taxi Hardship Fund.
$2 million for the Bendigo Metro Rail Project.
Source: News Release, Premier of Victoria, 5 May, 2015