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Residents in Melbourne’s booming outer west will soon be able to catch a train at their new station, with services stopping at Cobblebank Station from tomorrow.
Passengers between Melton and the city will also get two extra peak hour services from tomorrow, as well as new bus services for Cobblebank and Rockbank – meaning less waiting and congestion each morning for thousands of passengers in Melbourne’s west.
Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Infrastructure, Transport and Regional Development Michael McCormack said passengers along the line could also expect a boost in reliability with 18 kilometres of new track duplication completed and in use from tomorrow.
“The new track between Melton and Deer Park West will reduce delays and enable extra services by providing more opportunities for trains to pass each other along the Ballarat Line,” Mr McCormack said.
“This is a huge step forward for Ballarat Line passengers, who will see even more benefits from the Ballarat Line Upgrade rolled out next year.”
The station opening follows 23-days of intensive construction work, that will end tonight, including upgrades at Bacchus Marsh and Ballan station, track and signalling works, safety testing and driver training.
Victorian Minister for Transport Infrastructure Jacinta Allan said a huge amount of work had been delivered over the past month, to deliver stations and services along the line.
“I thank the workers who have been out there day and night delivering these works so this wonderful new station can start taking passengers tomorrow,” Ms Allan said.
“Major construction on the Ballarat Line Upgrade is on track to be finished by the end of the year – to deliver more trains, more often for this growing community and passengers throughout the west.”
Locals had a sneak peek of Cobblebank Station today with hundreds of people enjoying station tours, free entertainment and activities at a family-friendly community day.
The station was delivered as part of the half-a-billion-dollar Ballarat Line Upgrade, which also includes four major station upgrades, two new passing loops and new train stabling.
Senator for Victoria Sarah Henderson said the station was modern and accessible, with lifts, ramps, lighting and CCTV, as well as a car park with drop-off zone, secure bike storage and bus bays.
“Melbourne’s newest station will make a real difference for people in this community – making it quicker and easier to get to work and school, and home again at the end of the day.”
Victorian Member for Melton Steve McGhie welcomed the major milestone on the Ballarat Line Upgrade project, and the extra bus services that would connect commuters to the new station.
“Cobblebank Station will be serviced by 285 trains each week, as well as a new bus service that will run every 40 minutes on weekdays to give people more options to get to work or school,” she said.
The Ballarat Line Upgrade’s final works blitz for 2019 will take place from Saturday 7 to Friday 13 December, when coaches replace trains for all or part of the journey for Wendouree, Beaufort and Ararat passengers. Trains will continue to run between Maryborough, Ballarat and Southern Cross Station.
Following major construction completion at the end of the year, there will be a further period of disruption for commissioning and safety testing to bring the remaining infrastructure online and enable even more services to be introduced in 2020.
Once the project is completed, Ballarat line passengers will benefit from more peak services and trains every 40 minutes in the off-peak, as well as more modern and accessible stations.
The $551.7 million Ballarat Line Upgrade is jointly funded by the Commonwealth and Victorian Governments as part of the $1.75 billion Regional Rail Revival Program, which is upgrading regional passenger rail lines across Victoria. For more information, visit regionalrailrevival.vic.gov.au/ballarat.
This article first appeared on www.premier.vic.gov.au
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