Council rallies for rail

Council officers will also raise this matter in future advocacy discussions with the Department of Transport and Planning.

Zoe Moffatt

Hume council will write to the state and federal governments to strongly urge them to honour the promised timelines for the Melbourne Airport Rail Link (MARL) construction.

Councillors voted to accept the notice of motion to urge both governments to reassess the current delays and commit to the previously promised timeline, given the airport’s substantial role in local employment and economic activity.

Cr Jack Medcraft raised the motion and said he can’t believe that one day airport rail is on, and one day its off.

“We want to build a modern, up to date, international rail service to Melbourne airport,” he said. “I think this is a project that both governments have to be serious about.

“Let’s get it done. I think Melbourne airport is sadly lacking a proper system into there.

“This is a statement to say, we are an international airport, with 24 hour operation… we really have to bite the bullet and say let’s put a railway station in there and modernise Melbourne airport.”

Cr Joseph Haweil included the amendment “to reaffirm council’s ongoing support for the delivery of an underground MARL, a superior project outcome positioning Melbourne alongside other great international cities that have already embraced and delivered this model.

“There are obvious numerous technical elements to be resolved… It is essential that the hundred thousand passengers that transit through the airport everyday are not subject to major disruption.

“This is a superior design outcome, it will put us in the league with the great cities of the world and we are a great city, but to achieve the aspirations that we have is absolutely critical… [to] get it done right.

“Let’s get it done, and let’s get it done right.”

The letters will be sent to state ministers Gabrielle Williams and Danny Pearson, federal ministers Catherine King and Bill Shorten, and Sunbury MP Josh Bull.

Council officers will also raise the airport link in future advocacy discussions with the Department of Transport and Planning.