Environment Victoria is delighted the government has exercised its option to purchase more rolling stock for the Regional Rail Project.
Nine new two-car train sets will be ordered in addition to the existing order of 29 two-car sets for Regional Rail networks.
“Additional rolling stock means enough new trains to run all services in the Bendigo and Ballarat corridors,” said media spokesperson Wendy Everingham.
Trains will not have to be shared so sparingly between lines. The new train order will spread the benefits of the Fast Rail project to more Victorians.
“Extra rolling stock could be used on the re-opened rail networks. Ararat and Bairnsdale residents will not only get two new train services a day but now have the possibility of their new services operating with new trains,” she said.
“Capacity issues with new rolling stock on the Geelong line may also be solved. More two car sets will be available to be coupled together to cater for larger numbers of people who travel on that service”.
More vehicles means more travel needs can be catered for. There will be the capacity to run significantly higher frequencies of service on all lines.
“Environment Victoria believes that Victoria’s regional services must operate at least hourly to and from Melbourne, from early morning until late evening on all lines. Extra rolling stock means crowded and infrequent trains will become a past memory”, she said.
38 new train sets plus the existing Sprinters and Locomotive sets boost capacity enormously.
“To maximize new patronage on Victoria’s new trains, we must ensure the interiors are comfortable for longer journeys. Four across seating and not five should be the norm for Victorian Regional Rail travel,” she concluded.