WORK has started on the $1.96 billion Forrestfield-Airport rail link following a sod turning ceremony on Thursday at the site of the future Forrestfield train station.
Premier Colin Barnett said the 2013 election commitment, to be delivered by 2020, would provide be a 20-minute link between the eastern suburbs and Perth’s CBD.
He said it would service projected growth of residential and business developments along the rail route.
“It will also create 2000 new jobs during construction,” he said.
“The link will not only benefit people living in the new rail corridor, but will serve airport passengers and tourists alike and will leave a great first impression for visitors to Perth.”
The project will create an 8.5km railway, from a spur on the Midland line east of Bayswater station, largely underground to Dundas Road in Forrestfield.
It will include three new stations, including two underground at Belmont (near Brearley Avenue) and Airport Central (Perth Airport T1/T2), and another at Forrestfield.
Transport Minister Bill Marmion said the line would generate an estimated 20,000 daily boardings.
“Construction of the rail line is an important step in improving public transport in Perth’s eastern suburbs and reducing congestion in the metropolitan area,” he said.
Preliminary works have started at the Forrestfield end of the rail line, with relocation of utilities finished and work set to start on the construction of the ‘dive structure’ or entry points to the rail tunnels before the end of 2016.
Two tunnel boring machines will arrive from Germany in mid-2017, when drilling is expected to start.
Federal Urban Infrastructure Minister Paul Fletcher said the rail link would enhance the economic benefits of the airport by improving access to the CBD for visitors to Perth.
Federal Infrastructure and Transport Minister Darren Chester said it would transport people from the airport to the city efficiently – so they could get to work or home quicker.
Forrestfield-Perth Airport link
– Funded by State ($1.47 billion) and Federal ($490 million) governments
– 8km of the 8.5km rail line will be under ground
– Deepest tunnel point under Swan River will be 26m, and average depth under airport apron and runways will be 15m
– Bus, pedestrian, taxi and cycle facilities and 3000 car bays for Belmont and Forrestfield stations