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A LONG-awaited extension of the Cranbourne train line to Clyde will get underway next year if the Opposition wins November’s election.
Liberal leader Matthew Guy today announced the $487-million plan for new stations at Cranbourne East and Clyde.
He promised five kilometres of electrified double track with no new level crossings.
Instead, grade separations would be used for key intersections at the South Gippsland Highway, Narre Warren-Cranbourne Rd, Broad Oak Dr and Berwick-Cranbourne Rd.
The extension has been discussed for almost two decades, with Liberal Opposition Leader Ted Ballieu promising an extension to Cranbourne East before the 2006 election.
Opposition Leader Matthew Guy made the announcement today. Picture: Stuart McEvoyCasey Council has also been a strong supporter of the extension and renewed calls for the extension in April.
Mayor Geoff Ablett said today: “The campaign isn’t over yet and we won’t rest until Premier Daniel Andrews matches the Opposition’s promise and ‘Commits to Casey’.”
Mr Guy said that the extension would be a “watershed moment” for the southeastern area.
“Too often we have talked about extending the Cranbourne line beyond Cranbourne,” he said.
“It’s been talked and talked and talked about but never done.
“Here in Melbourne’s southeast, one of Australia’s fastest growing areas, it is so important that we invest and reinvest in our rail network.”
The extension will follow the abandoned South Gippsland line. Picture: Jason SammonIf elected in November, the Opposition promised to have work underway next year and extension complete by 2022.
A duplication of the line between Cranbourne and Dandenong would then kick off after the extension and would take about two and a half years.
The government announced last year that it had set aside $3 million to buy the land needed for a new Cranbourne East station.
It also has a business case underway for duplication of the Cranbourne line.
Acting Premier James Merlino said the opposition “had form” with public transport announcements.
“They promised to deliver Doncaster rail and did nothing, they promised to deliver Rowville rail and did nothing,” he said.
“You simply cannot trust the Liberals when it comes to public transport.
“When they were last in government, they didn’t deliver one major public project. Indeed, they cut services and closed country rail lines.”
Cranbourne is shaping as a key electorate for November’s election, as the Opposition looks to win back the seat.
Labor’s Jude Perera claimed the seat in 2002 but will retire at the election.
This article first appeared on www.heraldsun.com.au
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