Shepparton Line upgrade project enters new implementation step as the Victorian Government has selected the preferred contractor.
A joint venture between Coleman Rail and KBR has been selected to deliver the infrastructure upgrades works.
The contractor will begin early works including site investigations, industry engagement and design work for Shepparton Line stage 2. The project is expected to be completed by the end of 2022.
The project involves the extension of the platforms at Mooroopna, Murchison East and Nagambie stations to accommodate the longer VLocity trains and build a new stabling facility in an industrial area north of Shepparton station to accommodate the new trains.
A crossing loop extension near Murchison East will be constructed to enable trains to pass each other.
59 level crossings between Donnybrook and Shepparton will also be upgraded to boost safety for road users and train passengers. An extension to the crossing loop near Murchison East will enable trains to pass each other, improving reliability on the line.
In addition, a business case will be elaborated to finalise the scope and costs for delivering 9 return services a day between Shepparton and Melbourne.
The Government is investing AUD 356 million (USD 259 million) in the first two stages of the Shepparton Line upgrade, maximising benefits for passengers while minimising the disruption to services.
The completed first stage has already enabled 10 additional weekly services including 29 extra coach services between Shepparton and Seymour.
The upgraded line will be operated by the VLocity trains improving reliability and making journey’s more comfortable for passengers.
The VLocity is the newest train in the V/Line fleet and features mobile signal boosters for better phone coverage and improved accessibility for passengers with prams or mobility aids.
The project also includes another stage (Stage 3) which will involve track upgrades to enable trains to travel at up to 130km/h, signalling and other additional upgrades.
The Shepparton Line upgrade project is funded by the Victorian Government as part of the AUD 1.75 billion (USD 1.27 billion) Regional Rail Revival programme. In July, the Victorian and Australian governments committed AUD 300 million (USD 218.34 million) funds to deliver the programe, bringing the total investment to more than AUD 2 billion (USD 1.45 billion).