September 1, 2020
Date: 1 September 2020
Source: Sydney Morning Herald
Author: Tom Rabe
Photo credit: Peter Braig
Two new metro lines through Sydney’s south-east, including one linking Kogarah to Randwick, would be built under the NSW government’s long-term strategy for the region.
The government’s South East Sydney Transport Strategy indicates the Sydney Metro West would be extended from Green Square in the inner-east to Malabar or La Perouse, with stations at Randwick and Maroubra.
The Randwick stop would also intersect with an east-west line to Kogarah, with stations proposed for Eastlakes, Sydney Airport and Brighton-le-Sands.
The document outlines a plan for the La Perouse Metro to be built by 2041, while the Kogarah line is slated for 2056. Both would be subjected to business cases and investment decisions, the report says.
The document, dated August 2020 and described by Transport for NSW as a blueprint, is the most concrete evidence of the government’s planned metro expansion in the area, University of Sydney lecturer Geoffrey Clifton said.
“It’s been a line on the map for many years, this is the first indication that it’s been taken seriously,” Dr Clifton said.
“The planning process obviously has to go through a lot of steps, but it’s mostly about having the government will and the finances.”
Transport Minister Andrew Constance said the government was “thinking big”.
He pointed to recent projects as evidence multibillion-dollar infrastructure was possible for Sydney.
“People never believed Metro would happen, but this government is getting on with the job of building Australia’s biggest transport project,” Mr Constance said.
The report says it aims to link all south-east Sydney residents to an employment hub within 30 minutes, but adds it would be costly.
“There is a need to maximise project benefits and support the economic case for investment,” the document says.
The Metro City and Southwest, linking Chatswood to the CBD and onto Bankstown, is slated to cost more than $16 billion. That’s due to be completed by 2024.
Dr Clifton said the cost would probably be the ultimate hurdle for a government commitment, adding that much of the south-east would need to be developed to justify some of the transport hubs.
“If it is to go ahead then there will of course need to be more development around the area which may not be as popular,” he said.
Aside from the two metro lines, the document also proposes eight rapid electric bus routes through the region, a Sydney Gateway extension to Port Botany and a new bicycle network.
Committee for Sydney chief executive Gabriel Metcalf welcomed the public and active transport proposals.
“Metro is a hugely important infrastructure project and it’s really encouraging to see plans for more routes and stops in the south east of the city,” Mr Metcalf said.
Mr Metcalf added that the blueprint did not appear to show any plans for stations between Central and Green Square, nor between the University of NSW and Maroubra.