The North East Line Upgrade will enable improved train services for passengers and allow VLocity trains to run to Albury/Wodonga for the first time.
What will happen?
The Australian Rail Track Corporation (ARTC) is delivering the project, which includes:
- track resurfacing
- new ballast
- new underground wires
- drainage improvements
- bridge upgrades
- mud-hole removal
- smoother track surface
Rail Projects Victoria is also delivering upgrades to infrastructure to allow VLocity trains to run on the line, which includes:
- level crossing closures
- level crossing upgrades
- modifications to stabling at South Dynon
- upgrades to stabling at Albury Station.
ARTC is also delivering additional works on top of the original project scope, including upgrades to 20 more rail bridges and renewing track turnouts at Violet Town and Seymour.
The project will upgrade the line from Melbourne to Albury/Wodonga to a Victorian Class 2 performance standard, bringing it into line with other parts of Victoria’s regional rail network.
In addition, the Victorian Government will deliver new modern VLocity trains for the standard gauge line.
What are the benefits?
The project will enable VLocity trains to run to Albury/Wodonga for the first time, delivering a more reliable and comfortable service for passengers.
It will improve ride comfort for passenger train services by reducing bumps experienced during travel.
The upgrade will make services more reliable by upgrading track and addressing the main causes of delays.
The project will upgrade the north-east line to a Victorian Class 2 performance standard, bringing it into line with other parts of Victoria’s regional rail network.
What will the new VLocity trains look like?
The design of new VLocity trains for the north-east line has now been finalised.
The long-haul design, which has incorporated feedback from local passenger representatives, will provide a range of improvements including comfortable seats, and extra luggage and bike storage.
The Department of Transport (DoT) will deliver the new trains on behalf of the Victorian Government, and Bombardier will manufacture the trains at its facility in Dandenong.
To view a virtual tour and find out more about the new trains visit the DoT website.
The delivery of the new VLocity trains will be timed to align with the completion of the North East Line Upgrade.
What are the next steps?
Work on the North East Line Upgrade has been accelerated in recent months to deliver more benefits sooner for passengers in the state’s north east, including mudhole removal and ballast works for more comfortable and reliable services.
Work has commenced on modifications to six public level crossings on the line – two have been recently closed boosting safety for passengers and motorists, while others will be either closed or upgraded to feature boom gates, lights and bells.
Further stabling modifications will also be made to the South Dynon railway precinct in Melbourne to allow the new standard gauge VLocity trains to be stored, fuelled and maintained.
Major construction on the North East Line Upgrade started earlier this year, with more than 200 kilometres of tamping and mudhole removal works and of drainage reinstatement now finished.
The track upgrade delivered by ARTC is targeted for completion in mid-2021.
Who is responsible?
The project has been split into two main works packages to expedite its delivery.
The Australian Rail Track Corporation (ARTC) is delivering upgrades to the standard gauge track to improve passenger services between Melbourne and Albury/Wodonga.
The scope, methodology and delivery plan has been independently reviewed by the Institute of Railway Technology at Monash University.
Rail Projects Victoria (RPV) is coordinating a package of supporting infrastructure upgrades to enable VLocity trains to run on the North East Line.
RPV is overseeing the project on behalf of the Victorian Government to ensure maximum benefits are delivered to north east line passengers.
For more information
Visit ARTC’s North East Line Upgrade website.