It could take more than a decade, but the state government is locking in a transport corridor to extend the North West Rail Link.
Premier Barry O'Farrell and Transport Minister Gladys Berejiklian said they will seek to "identify and secure" a dedicated public transport corridor through the North West Growth Centre, that could one day join the Richmond train line.
As the Daily Telegraph revealed in June 2011, the rail link could one day be extended to meet the $2 billion residential and employment growth centres around Marsden Park.
Two potential corridors have today been outlined for discussion:
• From the end of the North West Rail Link heading northwest to the Richmond Line south of Riverstone Station, a distance of about 3.3km; and
• From the end of the North West Rail Link heading west to Schofields Station then further on to Marsden Park, about 6.8km.
Last year transport experts said the proposal would free up capacity on a number of congested lines and make RAAF Base Richmond a more likely second airport option.
The line would likely link up with the planned Sydney Business Park, a $2 billion, 550ha commercial, industrial, bulky goods and residential development at Marsden Park.
The precinct is expected to create 10,000 new jobs and around 1200 new homes and be built around a new Marsden Park town centre.
At the time former NSW Infrastructure boss David Richmond said the North West Rail Link would free up capacity across congested areas of the CityRail network if it linked up with the Richmond line.
The NSW Government is "determined to future-proof" North West Sydney's public transport options, Mr O'Farrell said today.
"In addition to getting on with the job of building the North West Rail Link, we're determined to secure a corridor for its future expansion," he said.
"Setting aside land now means families in Sydney's North West will have room for the public transport infrastructure they'll need in the future."
More than 200,000 people will move into the North West Growth Centre over the next 25 to 30 years – that's around 70,000 new houses in the Riverstone, Schofields and Marsden Park areas, the state government said.
"We need to be ready for this growth, and the NSW Government is getting on with the job of planning a prosperous future for Sydney's North West," Mr O'Farrell said.
The North West Rail Link is unlikely to be in operation for another decade, with construction not to start until at least 2015. It will have eight new stations along a 23km route from Epping to Rouse Hill.
The 15 kilometre tunnels between Epping and Kellyville will be the longest rail tunnels ever constructed in Sydney.
Last year the state government said the line will have a skytrain line which would allow roads and some houses to remain in place without the need to do zoning work.
It will also have around 4000 new car parking facilities.
• • • • •
Article was republished from dailytelegraph.com.au
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