New Regional train fleet on track
The NSW Nationals are committed to rural and regional communities ensuring that services deliver for country areas and are supported by country jobs.
In October last year the NSW Nationals committed $50 million to speed up the delivery of the 60 ageing XPT passenger cars – two years earlier than we promised at the last election. But we don’t just promise things at election time, we do things all the time.
This week in Dubbo was no different. I was pleased to announce the replacement of the entire regional train fleet, not just the XPT, but Endeavour and XPLORER trains as well.
The entire new regional fleet will also be serviced in regional NSW with the construction of a brand new rail maintenance facility in regional NSW – with Dubbo earmarked as the preferred location.
This is a game-changer for the people of regional NSW, delivering more convenient timetabling and reduced congestion for regional and rural passengers.
In a big boost for regional jobs, the new maintenance facility will also deliver long-term skilled jobs, including apprentices and traineeships for the Orana region. The new maintenance facility is earmarked for a site off White Street in Dubbo with work to commence in the coming weeks to begin planning. This is a massive boost for the people of Dubbo, as it will turn the region into an economic powerhouse.
An Expression of Interest will soon be issued for the design, construction maintenance of the new trains and the new maintenance facility. Under this process, the NSW Government will seek to deliver innovation, increased customer comfort and great energy efficiency.
A thorough tender evaluation process will be conducted next year, ahead of the contract being awarded in early 2019.
The new regional fleet will replace the existing XPTs, Xplorers and Endeavours operating on the NSW TrainLink network. This network currently carries customers between Sydney, Canberra, Melbourne and Brisbane, while travelling through a number of major regional centres such as:
- West - Bathurst, Orange, Dubbo, Broken Hill
- North - Taree, Coffs Harbour, Grafton
- North west – Armidale, Moree, Tamworth
- The Southern Highlands, Goulburn
- South - Bombaderry, Berry and Gerringong.
ALL ABOARD: Dubbo MP Troy Grant, NSW Trainlink chief Pete Allaway, Deputy Premier John Barilaro and Dubbo Regional Council administrator Michael Kneipp at Dubbo. Image via Daily Liberal