National Rail Program
In the 2017 Budget, the Australian Government established the $10 billion National Rail Program, a major, long-term commitment to invest in passenger rail networks in our big cities, and between our cities and their surrounding regional centres.
The 10 year National Rail Program is designed to help make our cities more liveable and efficient as they grow, reduce the burden on our roads, provide more reliable transport networks and support our efforts to decentralise our economy and grow regional Australia.
On 13 December 2017, the Hon Darren Chester MP, Minister for Infrastructure and Transport, and the Hon Paul Fletcher MP, Minister for Urban Infrastructure, released criteria for the National Rail Program. The criteria set out how the Australian Government will determine the priorities for investment under the National Rail Program.
In the 2018 Budget, the Australian Government committed $4.9 billion to projects under the National Rail Program. Projects include:
- up to $2.5 billion (to a total of up to $5 billion) towards a Melbourne Airport Rail Link.
- $1.1 billion to develop further stages of the METRONET in Perth.
- $475 million to construct a line in the Monash Precinct in Melbourne.
- $390 million to upgrade the Beerburrum to Nambour line in Queensland.
- $225 million to duplicate and electrify the Frankston to Baxter line in Melbourne.
- $220 million to complete the electrification of the Gawler line in Adelaide.
- $50 million towards a business case for the Western Sydney Airport North-South Rail Link as part of the Western Sydney City Deal.