Infrastructure Australia adds two more METRONET projects to the Infrastructure Priority List

Publication Date
04 May 2020

Infrastructure Australia has today announced that both the METRONET High Capacity Signalling Project and the Morley-Ellenbrook Line Project have been included as priority projects on the Infrastructure Priority List.

Infrastructure Australia’s Chief Executive, Romilly Madew, said both of the WA Government’s METRONET projects were signed off as priority investments after separate rigorous assessments by the independent advisory agency.

“Over the next 30 years, Perth is forecast to be home to a population of 3.5 million people making more than 1.4 million public transport trips per day. This pressing need to cater for the future growth of Perth informed our final assessments for both the High Capacity Signalling Project and the Morley-Ellenbrook Line Project,” Ms Madew said.

To accommodate Perth’s population growth and encourage more people to take public transport, the WA Government has developed the METRONET program, which would expand Perth’s rail network from 178 kilometres with 71 stations, to 250 kilometres with 89 stations.

“We know one of the key areas to accommodate Perth’s growing population over the next 10 years will be the corridor that connects Ellenbrook to the Perth CBD,” Ms Madew said.

The proposed Morley-Ellenbrook Line project will see a 21-kilometre rail line run along the corridor connecting Ellenbrook to the Perth CBD through Bayswater Station, linking to the Midland and Forrestfield-Airport lines.

Infrastructure Australia’s evaluation of the Morley-Ellenbrook Line project found it had good strategic merit, particularly in the long-term as it would improve and integrate transport options within the corridor, reduce car dependency and ease traffic congestion.

In its evaluation of the High Capacity Signalling Project, Infrastructure Australia found the project to be important when it comes to ensuring the safety, reliability and the future proofing of METRONET.

Ms Madew said her agency’s assessment of the project found that replacing the existing signalling and train control system with new contemporary technology would significantly improve the operation and maintenance of the rail system.

“Modern Automatic Train Control systems can facilitate a range of service improvements, such as schedule and headway optimisation, turn-up-and-go service frequencies, real-time passenger information, faster recovery from operational disruptions, and better regulation of train traffic at network pinch points, Ms Madew said.

“It’s also important to note that the High Capacity Signalling Project strongly aligns with Infrastructure Australia’s own recommendations to improve the performance of urban rail networks in our capital cities by making better use of existing networks and technology,” Ms Madew said.

Infrastructure Australia’s Priority List provides governments at all levels with a consensus list of nationally-significant investment opportunities for the near, medium and longer term.

A copy of the full evaluation summaries for METRONET High Capacity Signalling Project and  Morley-Ellenbrook Line Project are available on our website.