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The Victorian and Federal Governments of Australia have approved the rail link to Melbourne airport, which is estimated to cost between A$8bn and A$13bn ($5.67bn-$9.21bn).
A Heads of Agreement has been signed between the federal and state government to build the rail project.
The Melbourne Airport Rail Link (MARL) will connect the airport at Tullamarine to the central business district.
Both governments have committed to invest A$5bn ($3.54bn) each towards the project. The agreement encompasses strategic objectives, governance arrangements and information sharing processes for the joint commitment.
The Melbourne Airport Rail Link project is expected to mitigate traffic congestion on the Tullamarine Freeway, the main road connecting the city with the airport.
“The Rail Link is part of our plan to bust congestion across the city and get people home faster and safer.”
Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison said: “For decades Victorians have talked about a train line to the airport. We are delivering it. In last year’s budget, we made an A$5bn investment in the Melbourne Airport Rail Link, it was the biggest infrastructure commitment in the Budget.
“Melbourne is truly a global city that deserves world-class infrastructure. The Rail Link is part of our plan to bust congestion across the city and get people home faster and safer.”
Various ecological, traffic and geotechnical investigations associated with the rail link are underway.
Government agency Rail Projects Victoria has also hired technical and commercial advisers to devise the business case.
A reference group comprising representatives from the community, industry and local government will also be formed to offer guidance.
The business case is scheduled to be delivered next year.
Construction works are due to begin in 2022 and will take up to nine years to complete.
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