By 2075, the combined population of Melbourne, Sydney and Brisbane is projected to exceed 30 million people. The future demand for efficient, high-capacity transport services between major centres on Australia’s east coast will likely exceed the capacity of existing and planned rail, road and aviation services.
Protecting a corridor would significantly increase options for future development of high speed rail infrastructure to meet future demand for inter-city and regional travel.
Purchasing land for corridor protection is a relatively low-risk exercise for governments as acquiring land in the short-term does not preclude changing course in the future.
Modelling by Infrastructure Australia in 2017 estimates the net cost of protecting and acquiring the corridor as $2.8 billion (2016 prices) using a 7% real discount rate.