Press release: Minister of Public Transport, Martin Pakula
Tuesday, 7 September, 2010
Regional Rail Link Reduces Land Acquisition
Delivery of the $4.3 billion Regional Rail Link project has moved to the next stage with the Department of Transport today lodging documentation for an environmental effects referral to the Department of Planning and Community Development.
Public Transport Minister Martin Pakula said work undertaken by the Regional Rail Link team during the past several weeks had reduced the number of properties needing to be acquired for the project between Southern Cross Station and Deer Park. “Following further engineering analysis and community consultation, it has been determined that the Regional Rail Link route can be constructed on a more northerly alignment between Albert Street and Victoria Street, Footscray,” Mr Pakula said. “This will avoid the impact on some properties and minimise impact on some other properties. Our aim has been to deliver this vital project, which is the biggest investment in the rail system since the City Loop, with a minimum of disruption to residents."
“The total number of properties – including commercial and residential properties – proposed to be affected by whole or partial acquisition for the Southern Cross Station to Deer Park section of Regional Rail Link is now 78.”
In addition, the Salvation Army’s new building, the James Barker Hostel, will not be impacted, with only a minor effect to the property title on the rail corridor boundary.
The extent of impact on several other properties has also been reduced. Mr Pakula said the Regional Rail Link team had written to all property owners and has had telephone or face to face contact with all residential property owners and tenants. The Regional Rail Link team has written to all commercial property owners and tenants and has made contact with almost all of these affected landholders by telephone.
The Environment Effects referral and maps showing the proposed project area are available on the Regional Rail Link website www.transport.vic.gov.au/rrl and for viewing in hard copy at the Victorian Transport Plan Information Hub (61 Irving Street, Footscray). Regional Rail Link is a new $4.3 billion rail line jointly funded between the Gillard and Brumby Labor Governments that will provide capacity for enough extra train services for up to 9,000 passengers across the network in the peak hour.
Regional Rail Link generally separates regional trains from metropolitan trains – for the first time giving Geelong, Bendigo, and Ballarat trains their own dedicated tracks through the metropolitan system from Sunshine to Southern Cross Station. It will free up critically needed space for additional suburban services on the Werribee, Sydenham and Craigieburn lines.
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