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Upgrading the North East Line

Upgrading the North East Line

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) delivered the project’s track upgrades, which included:

  • track resurfacing
  • new ballast
  • new underground wires
  • drainage improvements
  • rail bridge upgrades
  • mud-hole removal
  • smoother track surface

ARTC delivered 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.

Rail Projects Victoria is also upgrading infrastructure to allow VLocity trains to run on the line, including:

  • level crossing closures and upgrades
  • modifications to train stabling at South Dynon
  • upgrades to train stabling at Albury Station.

The project will also build a new accessible ramp at Albury Station, to improve access to the station for people of all abilities.

In addition, the Victorian Government has ordered new modern VLocity trains for the standard gauge line following the completion of the North East Line Upgrade and a comprehensive testing process, to ensure they are safe and reliable for passengers.

What are the benefits?

The project will enable VLocity trains to run to Albury/Wodonga for the first time, allowing a more reliable and comfortable service for passengers.

Ride comfort for passenger train services will be improved by reducing bumps experienced during travel.

The track upgrade will make services more reliable and address the main causes of delays.

The project has upgraded 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 Alstom 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.

What are the next steps?

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.

Work is underway on the modifications to the stabling at the South Dynon railway precinct in Melbourne. Work will soon start on the stabling facility upgrade at Albury Station.

Construction will soon start on the accessible ramp at Albury Station to improve access to the station for people of all abilities.

VLocity trains will run on the North East Line in the second half of 2021.

Who is responsible?

The project has been split into two main works packages to expedite its delivery.

The Australian Rail Track Corporation (ARTC) delivered upgrades to the standard gauge track to improve passenger services between Melbourne and Albury/Wodonga.

The scope, methodology and delivery plan was independently reviewed by the Institute of Railway Technology at Monash University.

Rail Projects Victoria (RPV) is coordinating the 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 for North East Line passengers.

For more information

Visit ARTC’s North East Line Upgrade website.

Project images

North East works

North East works

North East works

North East works

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