Wollongong to Sydney by train in an hour by 2022 is one of the principal recommendations for the region in NSW Infrastructure’s report released today.
Also mentioned are the Maldon to Dombarton rail line and the long mooted F6 extension to Sydney Airport
Called First Things First, the 20-year strategy lists more than 50 recommendations which, if implemented, ‘‘would increase the size of the NSW economy by over $50 billion and and over 100,000 more jobs’’ by 2032, said Infrastructure NSW CEO Paul Broad.
The report breaks down the recommendations into three categories - ‘‘now’’ (projects to be started in the next five years); ‘‘next’’ (five to 10 years); and ‘‘later’’ (10-20 years).
The report recommends beginning work on improving rail travel times to Sydney within the next five years, beginning with a pilot program ‘‘ to develop the new approach without interfering with the core of the network’’, the report stated.
Further efforts to reduce travel times are recommended from 2017-2022 to bring the total time to an hour.
Both the Maldon-Dombarton rail line and the F6 extension have been classified as projects to be undertaken ‘‘later’’ - in the next 10-20 years.
The report suggested that the Maldon to Dombarton rail line would not be needed for the next 10 years based on current freight projections. It also suggest that, in the interim period, the Moss Vale to Unanderra line could be used to transport freight, assisted by investments to increase its carrying capacity.
It expects that the government would not pay for the construction of the Maldon to Dombarton line, saying it should be ‘‘predominantly funded by the private sector’’.
As for the F6 extension, it is identified as ‘‘highly desirable’’ to bring the connections to Sydney up to motorway standard and recommends the development begin in 10-20 years’ time.
It puts the cost to build the extension at $3billion, assuming the use of the existing transit corridor between St Peters and the Royal National Park at Loftus and a toll placed on the road.