Ground has broken on a Sydney rail project which will double rail capacity between Parramatta and the Sydney CBD and generate more than 10,000 jobs during construction and around 70,000 indirect jobs.
NSW Premier Gladys Berijiklian, Treasurer Dominic Perrottet and Minister for Transport Andrew Constance have officially marked the start of work at The Bays Station site (see image), which is being prepared for the arrival of tunnel boring machines.
Set to move around 40,000 people per hour between Parramatta and the Sydney CBD and slash travel times between Parramatta and the CBD to 20 minutes, the new line will involve 24 kilometres of underground rail and seven new fully accessible stations at Westmead, Parramatta, Sydney Olympic Park, North Strathfield, Burwood North, Five Dock, The Bays and the Sydney CBD.
The early works at The Bays station involve roadwork that will pave the way for the first of four tunnel boring machines to be in the ground before the end of 2022.
Due to the scale of project, contracts for tunnelling and excavation works have been separated into geographically-specific packages between Westmead and the Sydney CBD.
Sydney Metro is continuing to work through the shortlist process to appoint a consortia to deliver the first tunnelling package, the Central Tunnelling Package.
This will include 11 kilometres of twin tunnels from The Bays to Sydney Olympic Park.
The first tunnelling contract is expected to be awarded by the middle of 2021.
The commencement of works follows the allocation of $10.4 billion to the project in yesterday’s NSW state budget.
That budget allocated $107 billion toward infrastructure investment over the next four years as the government seeks to boost construction activity to spur a post-COVID recovery.
NSW Premier Gladys Berijiklian welcomed the project’s commencement.
“Sydney Metro West is a life changing mega project which will transform how we get around Sydney and ensure we have the right transport in place to accommodate the city’s growth,” she said.
“This project will help cut crowding on three major train lines and take tens of thousands of cars off the roads every day.”