Transport Minister Andrew Constance said the major milestone will result in the creation of hundreds of jobs for the NSW economy to deliver essential upgrades to rail infrastructure including stabling yards, signalling, track, station platforms and power supply at key locations between Central, the T8 Airport Line tunnel and the South Coast.
“We’re cracking on with major infrastructure projects like this one to ensure we support jobs, communities and the economy at this critical time,” Mr Constance said.
“Today’s announcement means we are keeping people in work and creating about 350 direct new jobs and around 200 indirect jobs located either in Sydney or on the South Coast.”
The jobs will cover a range of disciplines including engineers, rail construction workers, security guards, truck drivers, electricians, plumbers, labourers, concrete workers and apprentices.
The employment drive will also be focused on developing a diverse workforce by providing opportunities for skills development and training to groups such as women, young people, and Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders.
“The work will support the introduction of new suburban and intercity trains and allow us to deliver more frequent train services, with less wait times and a more comfortable journey for customers on the T4 Illawarra, T8 Airport and South Coast lines,” Mr Constance said.
“We’re prioritising these lines because they are among the busiest on the network, catering for 440,000 trips in a typical day, which is around one third of daily rail customers.”
The infrastructure upgrades, which form part of the NSW Government’s $4.3 billion More Trains, More Services program, will be delivered as two separate packages of work, each worth around $300 million.
The Next Rail partnership comprising of John Holland & Jacobs will deliver all projects from Central to Hurstville, while the Transport for Tomorrow partnership comprising of Laing O’Rourke & KBR will deliver all projects between Mortdale and Kiama.
Construction for the rail upgrades will begin in the middle of this year and be completed in advance of the service improvements, which are planned for late 2022.
Further improvements will be delivered for customers in 2024, including on the T4, T8 and South Coast Lines, as part of the More Trains, More Services Program to effectively integrate Sydney Metro City and Southwest.
Key service improvements for customers:
T4 Illawarra Line
- a 20 per cent increase in peak services on the T4 Illawarra Line. This includes an extra three services an hour in the peak for key hubs like Hurstville and Sutherland
- additional capacity to carry 3600 more customers in the peak.
T8 Airport Line
- more services for the T8 Airport Line, including a 60 per cent increase at the International, Domestic, Mascot and Green Square stations during the morning peak, meaning trains on average every three to four minutes instead of every six minutes today
- additional capacity to carry 2400 more customers in the peak.
South Coast Line
- during peak times, all New Intercity Fleet trains will operate as 10 car trains instead of eight, proving a new level of comfort, convenience and reliability for customers
- an extra off peak service each hour between Wollongong and the Sydney CBD, meaning a train every 30 minutes on average.