Western Sydney’s light rail network will connect Parramatta’s CBD to the key hubs of Sydney Olympic Park, Westmead Hospital, Western Sydney University and Strathfield.
NSW Premier Mike Baird, Minister for Transport and Infrastructure Andrew Constance and Minister for Planning Rob Stokes today unveiled the preferred route for the Parramatta Light Rail project, which will kick-start revitalisation and jobs growth along a 22-kilometre corridor.
“We’re delivering a modern, efficient and reliable light rail network for Western Sydney,” Mr Baird said.
“The light rail network will help Parramatta reach its potential as Sydney’s second CBD and be a major boost to existing public transport services in Western Sydney.”
The NSW Government investigated four short-listed corridors for light rail in Western Sydney and the preferred network includes a combination of two of these options.
The spine of the preferred route runs from Westmead to Strathfield via Parramatta CBD, and incorporating Camellia and Sydney Olympic Park.
A light rail line will also branch to Carlingford, replacing the existing heavy rail shuttle.
Mr Constance said: “Light rail will be a fantastic new public transport option for Western Sydney - we’ve started building in Sydney’s CBD, Newcastle light rail is on track and now progress for Western Sydney is about to crack on.”
Mr Stokes said: “This will be a game changer for Sydney’s second CBD – the preferred route provides the most opportunity for new jobs and urban renewal.”
Work will now begin on a final business case and assessment of the preferred network. This work will include planning, design and consultation with key stakeholders along the network to develop the staging of the project, the exact light rail route and stops, and the final project cost.
The light rail corridor will activate a priority growth area and there is an opportunity for the government to share in the value uplift that will occur along the corridor.
A Special Infrastructure Contribution will be implemented, with the levy expected to be set at around $200 per square metre of gross floor area of new residential developments subject to consultation.
The funding from the SIC is to be reserved for Parramatta Light Rail and associated infrastructure like new schools and road upgrades.
Consultation will be undertaken with industry before the SIC is finalised.
The SIC will be in addition to the $1 billion the NSW Government has already reserved for Parramatta Light Rail. The government will also explore funding contributions from the federal and local governments.