Rail link to go ahead, funding cut for road projects


The future of the Melbourne Airport Rail Link is clearer with the federal government confirming it will provide funding for the project, but two major road projects in Melbourne’s west have lost federal government funding.

The federal government on Thursday released its long awaited national infrastructure review of major projects for the next 10 years which had previously received funding commitments, with 50 projects across the country to lose funding.

The airport rail project which will build a train line from Sunshine to Melbourne Airport will be built, with the federal government commitment of $5 billion remaining.

Two new stations, Keilor East and an airport station, and upgrades to Sunshine and Albion stations are part of the rail link project.

The O’Herns Road interchange upgrade on the Hume Freeway will still go ahead as will the Mickleham Road upgrades in a win for northern drivers.

The Ison Road overpass upgrade in Wyndham and the Outer Metropolitan Ring Rail South will also still be built.

The Outer Metropolitan Ring- E6 Corridor detailed business case will continue as planned, as will the business case for the Western Freeway upgrade between Melton and Caroline Springs.

The Wollert Rail feasibility study is another project that will continue as planned.

Two major road upgrades are now in doubt with the federal government refusing to commit money to them.

The Calder Freeway upgrades between the M80 Ring Road and Gap Road, Sunbury, along with the Western Highway upgrades between the M80 Ring Road and Ferris Road, Melton are among the 50 projects to have funding cut.

The federal government had previously committed $50 million to the Calder Freeway upgrades.

While, uncertainty surrounds the electrification of the Melton and Wyndham Vale train lines.

The review has allocated $30 million for future planning for the Western Rail Plan, which includes both lines, but previous information has indicated that it won’t be built until after the Geelong Fast Rail is built.

As part of the review, the federal government indicated that it won’t give funding to the project at this time.

More to come.