The New South Wales government announced the catenary free sections of the first stage of Parramatta LRT, that is divided into four sections, of which two are catenary free sections and other two will utilize overhead wires. The wire-free sections will be between the Westmead Station and Cumberland Hospital stops, and between the Prince Alfred Square and Tramway Avenue stops.
The LRT will connect Westmead to Carlingford via the Parramatta CBD and Camellia with a two-way track spanning 12 km with 16 stops.
Major construction is set to begin this year and the light rail is expected to begin operations in 2023.
In December 2018, two major contracts were awarded to build and operate Stage 1 of the LRT. The USD 600.8 million major contract to build the light rail system has been awarded to Downer – CPB Contractors JV, while the USD 383.4 million contract to supply and operate the network and build the depot, light rail stops and power systems has been awarded to the Great River City Light Rail consortium that includes Transdev and CAF.
The project has a USD 1.7 billion (AUD 2.4 billion) budget which includes the two major contracts, early and enabling works, road network upgrades, new bridges and active transport links, urban design, changes to the bus network and project costs from 2015-2023.