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A HIGH-speed bullet train connecting Sydney to regional NSW could be a reality within 50 years, as the government extends its massive infrastructure plan that Premier Gladys Berejiklian described as “Bradfield on steroids”.
Ms Berejiklian invoked the name of the pioneering designer of the Sydney Harbour Bridge and the city’s rail network to reinforce the need to think big so Sydney can deliver on its promise of being a truly international city.
NSW “should be talking bullet trains in NSW” within the next 50 years, Ms Berejiklian told The Daily Telegraph in an interview for the Bradfield Oration series on Sydney’s future.
Premier Gladys Berejiklian. Picture: Jonathan NgPublic transport is a central part of the massive dose of new infrastructure Ms Berejiklian wants to leave as her legacy.
The government is on the verge of completing Australia’s first major underground metro — a project the government believes will transform Sydney.
Other major projects under way in the planning stages include light rail in the city, Parramatta and the southeast and the North South Rail Line.
Ms Berejiklian saw the potential for bullet trains after a visit to Japan in August.“Every time I’ve talked about a major project they told me it couldn’t happen,” the Premier said, adding that what her government had been doing was “Bradfield on steroids”.
“Looking back we can see what held that era back and we are setting ourselves up for the next 50 years or 100 years,” she said.
“We’re delivering multiple times what Bradfield did in his time.”
She said with the growth of Sydney around the new airport, Sydney could become the region’s manufacturing and tech capital.
Ms Berejiklian said that when considering Sydney’s place as the best city in the region, her sights were set on cities like Singapore and Hong Kong, rather than Melbourne.
She first saw the potential for bullet trains when she visited Tokyo last August. Asked if she saw bullet trains as a way to connect Sydney’s central business district with regional NSW, she said: “Look, yes. I’ll say more broadly we want to connect communities, and the opportunities we have in growing regional NSW are phenomenal. We have the opportunities to connect communities into the future.”
She wants to connect Sydney with regional areas of NSW as there are “many opportunities”.Linking Sydney to the regions by high-speed rail would signal a new frontier for transport in NSW.
But it would require joint state-federal funding.
“Vision has no bounds. We are only limited by our ability to deliver and I’m making sure we have that ability to deliver,” Ms Berejiklian said.
This article first appeared on www.dailytelegraph.com.au
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