Funding Fast Rail
The Fast Rail Network Strategy will examine a range of funding options and smart staging to ensure each part of the fast rail network provides value for money and continues to progress the project.
Each funding option considered as part of the strategy will be assessed based on the estimated cost of the project in light of economic and other benefits to the community, and complementary revenue-generating opportunities. This is why it is essential for governments to map out options, identify priorities and plan for future stages of investment.
The NSW Government has an unmatched record for identifying and funding infrastructure. The infrastructure program is designed to make communities more liveable, connected and productive today, while laying the foundations for the NSW of tomorrow.
This investment pipeline, of $87.2 billion over four years to 2021–22, is the largest program ever undertaken by any state in Australia.
This record infrastructure program is possible because, since 2011, the government has worked tirelessly to rebuild the state’s economic fundamentals – bringing the budget back to strong surplus, eliminating government net debt and securing our Triple-A credit rating. Off the back of this financial strength, we have reshaped the role of government as an enabler.
There are more than 600 infrastructure projects underway or in planning and development, and long-term plans are in place through to the middle of the century. The NSW Government will continue to invest in infrastructure to make our communities great places to live, now and into the future.
Learning from international experience
The Shinkansen, or bullet train, opened in 1964 and was the world’s first high-speed rail line. The network has grown in phases and continues to expand after more than 50 years. The network has changed the pattern of business in Japan and increased tourism. It is estimated to have a US$19 billion economic impact per year.
The TGV opened in 1981 and connects more than 150 cities and towns in France, as well as cities in neighbouring countries. The combination of dedicated high-speed lines and mixed conventional lines has enabled the incremental growth of the network, increasing connectivity and improving regional services.
High Speed 1 (HS1) in the UK has transformed the prosperity of small towns and cities 100–150 kilometres from London. HS1 has been a catalyst for growth in the regions it serves, increasing the regional talent pool, and attracting investment and business into the regions.
Other passenger rail programs
Regional rail fleet program
Procurement is underway on new diesel trains to replace the ageing XPT, Xplorer and Endeavour rail fleets. These trains service passengers travelling between Sydney,
Canberra, Melbourne, Brisbane and major regional centres. They will be serviced by a new maintenance centre in Dubbo. The government is proceeding with this major
investment, which will complement the future fast rail network.
New intercity fleet
Brand new intercity trains will replace the 40-year-old silver sets that currently operate electric rail services between Sydney and the Central Coast, Newcastle, the Blue Mountains and the Illawarra. These new trains will provide more comfortable and modern features for intercity customers. The first of these trains will be arriving in 2019.