Sydney Light rail set to return the southeast

After more than 50 years, the long awaited return of the Sydney Light rail is finally on track for the southeast to reduce the congested streets.

The estimated $1.6 billion 12 kilometre light rail project will link Circular Quay and Central via George St, the Moore Park sporting and entertainment precinct including the Sydney Cricket Ground and Allianz Stadium on Anzac Pde, Royal Randwick Racecourse on Alison Rd and onto High St to alleviate the ever-growing Randwick Health and Education hub of the four hospitals and the University of NSW.

NSW Premier Barry O’Farrell and Transport minister Gladys Berejiklian announced this morning that the light rail will also run from Kingsford Five Ways at the roundabout of Anzac Pde and Bunnerong Rd to Central station through Surry Hills then onto Circular Quay.

Ms Berejiklian said congestion on roads in the CBD and surrounding areas would only get worse as the number of jobs in the city grew and the population increased.

“With the introduction of light rail and the redesigned bus network announced today, we will be able to significantly reduce the number of buses clogging the city’s streets and provide fast and reliable links for people to key destinations like the Prince of Wales Hospital, University of NSW, SCG, Allianz Stadium, Moore Park, Central and Circular Quay,” she said.

Coogee MP Bruce Notley-Smith said seeing the return of the trams to the eastern suburbs had been a dream he had been harbouring since he was a child.

“I used to walk along the old tramway behind my school at Coogee Public as a young boy so to be able to have it happen again is just fantastic,” he said. “It’s going to make significant improvements to the comfort amenity and the time to travel to and from the east. It’s really great to deliver an election promise.”

Greens councillor Murray Matson paid tribute to Randwick Council staff for the line to UNSW.

“Randwick City Council staff were magnificent in implementing our pre-feasibility study of several years ago that gave substance to the pro light rail policies of the elected councillors,'” he said. ” It identified workable route configurations that were later drawn on by the state government. It was money well spent on behalf on behalf of the community and I am proud to have been one of the councillors who voted to commit it.”

Fellow Greens councillor Lindsay Shurey stated that the next public transport goal for the Randwick Greens would be an extension of the line from UNSW to Maroubra Junction.

“The Greens will be arguing for next year’s draft Council budget to include funding for a new feasibility study to explore the potential for extending the light rail line from UNSW to Maroubra Junction,” she said. “The council has already agreed to support in principle a Greens motion that the Junction be a further extension target. Of course, any such line should also be integrated with a bike path system.”

Randwick mayor Tony Bowen said the council had worked hard to campaign for the return of light rail forming a Memorandum of Understanding with the University of NSW, the Australian Turf Club, The Centennial Park and Moore Park Trust and the South Eastern Sydney and Illawarra Area Health Service.

” It’s great news those efforts are now paying off,” he said. “I would also like to see the Government commit to maintaining or improving the current bus services in the eastern suburbs and also consider providing a dedicated bicycle path alongside the light rail route.”


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