Federal Labor Party funding for Metro Rail Tunnel project

Filling in a notable gap in the package of projects released on Friday, the Federal Labor Party has announced it will contribute $380 million towards the Melbourne Metro rail tunnel project. While the project has received a full funding allocation by the State Government, it is a city-shaping project that deserves stong Federal funding support.

$380 million in itself is a small contribution towards the project’s $11 billion price-tag – however, the Federal Labor party has also said it will back the Coalition’s allocation of a further $857 million to the project under the asset recycling scheme.

Labor will also commit to spending $120 million on a Park and Ride access fund, creating additional parking spaces at key train stations across the network. RACV’s On Track survey found a lack of car parking topped the list when it came to commuters’ issues accessing Victoria’s train stations. This will go some way towards providing relief, and needs to be complemented by better bus, walking and cycling connections to stations.

Federal support for the Metro Rail project is welcome. It is a critical piece of infrastructure that will boost rail services, unclog a major rail bottleneck in the rail network and open up opportunities for further rail line expansions needed to keep Melbourne moving.

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Written by Brian Negus, General Manager Public Policy
June 19, 2016