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For nearly a decade, residents in and around Ellenbrook have been told they could get a new train line — only to be left disappointed.
But the McGowan Government is adamant its decision not to allocate any money to construct a new line to Ellenbrook is not another let-down for people in Perth's north-east.
While the only money in last week's budget for the Ellenbrook train line was funds to plan and develop a business case, Transport Minister Rita Saffioti insisted the project would not be delayed.
Under existing plans, that would mean construction underway in 2019 and trains running on the line in 2022.
"We are in the process of planning for that project," Ms Saffioti said.
"We are starting from scratch on that project, there was no planning done, so we are going through that business case exercise."
Both major parties promised ahead of the 2008 election to build an Ellenbrook train line, but the Liberal-National Government dumped the plan after coming into office.
Another broken promise?Shadow treasurer Dean Nalder said Ellenbrook residents would rightly be sceptical about whether the new government would deliver the new line without money in the budget to construct it.
"There has to be budget for it and they haven't allowed for that, so it looks like another broken promise," he said.
"They had this as an election commitment in 2008 so you'd think they would have it worked up by now."
But Ms Saffioti said she would be trying to lock in federal funding for the Ellenbrook line "as soon as possible", having previously won Commonwealth support for the Government's other Metronet plans.
Last week's budget also revealed nearly $200 million in Metronet cost blowouts in the six months since the election.
The price of the new Thornlie-to-Cockburn train line and the extension of the Joondalup line to Yanchep have both risen considerably since Labor's pre-election forecasts, which were not scrutinised by Treasury.
But Treasurer Ben Wyatt downplayed the increased cost.
"It is budget one, there is still work to do on these projects but I am fairly relaxed they will come in as we expect," Mr Wyatt said.
"We have to actually plan these projects … it's not just about having the money in the budget, you have got to do the work around it."
The first stage of Metronet also includes an extension of the Armadale line to Byford.
This article first appeared on www.abc.net.au
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