East-West Rail backed to address public transport needs

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Hobsons Bay City Council has formalised its support for the East-West Metro Rail Link (EWMR) to address congestion in the growth areas in Melbourne’s west.

Council overwhelmingly voted at its meeting on 13 September 2022 to abandon its support for Melbourne Metro 2 in favour of EWMR as its strategy position for rail transport.

It also renewed its calls for the state and federal governments to bring forward planning and funding to address the community’s public transport needs and reinstate the Paisley station on the Werribee line.

The east-west plan, proposed by the Rail Futures Institute, would include a new underground station at Spotswood that would connect to Werribee on a western alignment.

Another line from Spotswood would follow the Newport-Sunshine rail freight corridor northwest to the Brimbank and Melton municipalities. Importantly, this would allow for the construction of a station in Altona North to service the new housing estate known as Precinct 15.

Eastwards from Spotswood, the EWMR would provide a direct link from Hobsons Bay into Fishermans Bend, the Melbourne CBD and Parkville.

The EWMR will also connect our biggest tourist attraction, Scienceworks, directly to the growing population in Melton and Brimbank.

Mayor of Hobsons Bay, Cr Peter Hemphill, said the EWMR combined the best features of the state government’s stalled Western Rail Plan with Stage 1 of Melbourne Metro 2.

“Our community is tired of waiting for a solution to our increasing public transport concerns. Hobsons Bay, along with the rest of the western suburbs, is growing – and growing fast – and we need action now that will cater for that expansion,” Cr Hemphill said.

“The EWMR plan put forward by Rail Futures during Council’s research of transport solutions addresses those needs of our community. We need better access to and through the CBD to the east of Melbourne, we need a station at Altona North to service the large and growing population in that area, and we need a connection to Sunshine, which will eventually connect us to Melbourne Airport.

“Already, it is difficult to catch a train at our biggest commuter station at Newport to the CBD in the morning peak hour.

“With the City of Wyndham’s population expected to more than double to 512,000 by 2041, it will be almost impossible to catch a train during the morning peak hour in Altona, Newport and Spotswood, within 10 years.

“We need to start building that solution now.”

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