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Fast trains from Geelong would speed into the city via a new rail link connected to the proposed Melbourne Metro 2 underground railway, under a game-changing proposal being considered by the Andrews government.
Sources across industry and government say Spring Street is looking at the proposal. Melbourne Metro 2 would connect Newport, Fishermans Bend, the CBD and Clifton Hill.
Trains from Geelong would run along an upgraded section of track linking the Geelong and Werribee lines that is currently used for freight. New tracks would then be built from Werribee to Newport and link up with Melbourne Metro 2.
The proposal is understood to have been pitched to the Morrison government in a bid to win support for an above-ground airport rail link, which would mean ditching plans for a tunnel between the city and Sunshine.
The Morrison government has previously said that a tunnel to Sunshine was crucial for delivering fast rail to Geelong, which it has pledged $2 billion to build.
A state government spokeswoman did not deny that the alternative rail proposal was being considered.
The project - which would cost tens of billions of dollars - could be built in stages, with the Geelong line upgrades to Werribee built first.
The ambitious Metro 2 city tunnel would be built many years from now, most likely in the 2030s.
This article first appeared on www.theage.com.au
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