Western Sydney – Parramatta light rail will cost $1.7bn

Western Sydney – Parramatta light rail will cost $1.7bn : Parramatta City Council today unveiled its first report into a proposed $1.7 billion light rail network to service the growing Western Sydney population.

The report was launched at this mornings State of the City Address, hosted by Council in partnership with the Parramatta Chamber of Commerce.

Lord Mayor of Parramatta, Cr John Chedid said the report concluded that a light rail network in Western Sydney would be feasible and have numerous benefits for areas with poor access to public transport, such as the corridors from Parramatta to Castle Hill and Macquarie Park.

Whats been recommended is a 24-kilometre light rail network with up to 25 stations along its route, Cr Chedid said.

The first stage would link Parramatta to Macquarie Park via Eastwood and another line connecting Parramatta to Castle Hill. From here, the network would grow and evolve to meet the future economic and social needs of the region.

We estimate that the first stage of the Network would cost about $1.7 billion to construct. The Castle Hill line will cost about $800 million and the Macquarie Park line about $900 million.

The feasibility study investigated the impact a light network in Western Sydney would have on the economy, environment and social disadvantage.

Not surprisingly, the report found that better transport links would improve social cohesion, particularly for people who have little choice but to use existing poor public transport options to access jobs and education, Cr Chedid said.

Taking people off roads and onto our light rail will also have flow on benefits for Sydneys crippling traffic congestion, the environment and peoples health and work/life balance.

Cr Chedid added that for the project to progress towards construction, $20 million in funding and support must be secured for detailed planning work.

Were looking to the State and Federal Governments to help the Western Sydney region with taking forward this feasible transport solution, Cr Chedid said.

Key facts on the proposed Western Sydney Light Rail Network:

First stage that would be constructed: Parramatta to Macquarie Park via Eastwood and another line connecting Parramatta to Castle Hill
The first stage would be 24-kilometres long, include up to 25 stations
Cost $32 million per year to operate
Service more than 5,000 passengers per corridor during peak hour periods
Future stages: Parramatta to Bankstown and Parramatta to Rhodes via Sydney Olympic Park

Future Network benefits:

Generate $5 billion in construction activity
Create an additional 2,500 jobs
Generate $242 million in economic activity each year
Employ 170 people long-term
Increase Western Sydneys Gross Regional Product by $3 billion
Provide $50 million in user benefits per year

Key stakeholders in the Western Sydney Light Rail Network:

The University of Western Sydney said: “The University of Western Sydney commends Parramatta City Council for its work in the development of the Western Sydney Light Rail Network.

The University shares Councils commitment to optimising transport, connectivity, growth and innovation throughout Parramatta and Western Sydney more broadly, and we welcome the opportunity to consult on strategies to achieve this common goal.”

David Borger, Western Sydney Director of the Sydney Business Chamber, said: Parramatta City Councils light rail plan is a common sense solution to creating stronger public transport links within Western Sydney.

We cant just talk about making Parramatta Sydneys second CBD we need action. Linking Parramatta with Westmead, the University of Western Sydney and North Ryde, along with other important centres in Western Sydney, is the right approach to supporting new and better jobs in the region and reducing congestion on our existing transport network.

Download the report:

The full phase one feasibility report into the Western Sydney Light Rail Network is available to download from

http://www.parracity.nsw.gov.au/light_rail_for_western_sydney

Western Sydney - Parramatta light rail will cost $1.7bn

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