Works will get underway on the Sunbury line next month to deliver more trains as the Andrews Labor Government continues its significant overhaul of the rail corridor ahead of bigger trains running along the line and through the Metro Tunnel.

John Holland, CPB Contractors, AECOM and Metro Trains Melbourne have been awarded the contract for the $534 million second package of works being delivered as part of the wider $2.1 billion More Trains for Sunbury project.

This project will include overhead power upgrades between Sunbury and South Kensington at the site of the Metro Tunnel’s eastern entrance in South Yarra, signaling power upgrades and power infrastructure at Calder Park sidings.

These upgrades will build on works already underway to extend platforms, boost accessibility and build new stabling at stations along the Sunbury line. Site investigations for the platform extensions and stabling upgrades kicked off in August, with major works on the platform extensions and stabling to begin by the end of the year.

The project was funded in the Victorian Budget 2018/19. It will deliver platform extensions at ten stations between Sunbury and Footscray, wheelchair boarding platforms at eight stations, traction power upgrades and improvements to train stabling at Sunbury, Calder Park and Watergardens.

The project will pave the way for the Labor Government’s fleet of 65 new bigger trains to run all the way to Sunbury when the Metro Tunnel is finished in 2025.

The Metro Tunnel will connect the Cranbourne, Pakenham and Sunbury lines, creating space in the City Loop for more services across Melbourne. The bigger trains will be 20 per cent bigger than current trains on the metropolitan network, reducing congestion and carrying more passengers with every trip.

The bigger trains, coupled with the Metro Tunnel, will enable an extra 113,000 peak hour passengers on the Sunbury line each week and slash their journey times by up to 40 minutes a day.

In addition to the passenger benefits, the Sunbury Line Upgrade will also support hundreds of local jobs, including up to 30 full-time positions for engineering cadets, trainees, apprentices and priority jobseekers.

For more information on the biggest investment in transport infrastructure in Victoria’s history, visit bigbuild.vic.gov.au.