Rail investment big win for regional Victorians

RACV welcomes today's announcement investing $1.45 billion into Victoria’s regional rail network ahead of the State Budget this week.

RACV has stressed the need for significant improvements to Victoria's regional rail lines and services and is pleased to see the Government making a commitment to improve travel for regional Victorians.

Brian Negus, RACV General Manger Public Policy said, “We identified a number of problems on the rail network back in 2015 and have called on the Government to make substantial investment to improve regional public transport options for Victorians. Today's rail investment announcement is a major win for RACV members and indeed all Victorians living in regional areas.

“With massive growth predicted for Victoria’s population, we need to make sure our regional cities are connected to Melbourne with faster and more frequent services so all Victorian’s have a real choice on how they travel for both work and leisure.

“Through our On Track surveys, regional commuters tell us that overcrowding, infrequent services, poor station facilities and lack of car parking at stations are among their top concerns.”

RACV’s Growing Pains 2015 report called for an upgrade to regional train capacity, services and station facilities for the ten largest regional cities in Victoria. This includes Geelong, Bendigo, Ballarat, Traralgon and Shepparton.

RACV also welcomes the Government’s commitment to investigate alternatives for a vital Melbourne Airport rail link and to develop a business case for the project.

Mr Negus said, “It is clear that a fast direct-rail link is required to Melbourne Airport given the expected growth in passengers from more than 30 million a year at present, to more than 60 million in 2030.”

“This is a project of national importance and we look forward to the Federal Government working with the State Government to scope and deliver this link.

Notes to Editor:

  1. RACV’s Regional Victoria Growing Pains can be found on the RACV website.
  2. The On Track survey results can be found on the RACV website.
Written by RACV - Media Relations (03) 9790 2572
May 01, 2017