The Victorian Government is upgrading the Shepparton Line to deliver more reliable services and allow modern VLocity trains to travel to and from Shepparton for the first time.
The VLocity is the newest and fastest train in the V/Line fleet, and has improved features including mobile signal boosters for better phone coverage and better accessibility for people with prams or mobility aids.
A new stabling facility is required to house these trains, which are longer than the current classic fleet.
Without adequate stabling facilities, trains need to travel long distances without passengers, reducing the number of services that can run on the line.
Stabling facilities are a critical part of our rail network, allowing trains to begin service on time each day.
What is train stabling?
A train stabling facility is where trains are cleaned and prepared for service the next day. It generally consists of:
- a fenced, open-air site
- train tracks
- connections to the main train line
- signalling and communication systems
- CCTV and lighting
- a building to support operations and amenities for staff
- designated areas for staff car parking
- access roads and walkways to the facility.
A typical train stabling facility operates almost 24 hours a day, from approximately an hour before the first train service starts to an hour after the last service ends. Operational impacts such as noise will be managed in accordance with all relevant standards and regulations.
Where will the stabling facility be located?
Rail Projects Victoria conducted a detailed analysis of suitable locations for a stabling facility.
This process identified the proposed site in an industrial area approximately three kilometres north of Shepparton Station, which is bordered by industrial, farming and urban growth zones as identified in the Greater Shepparton Planning Scheme.
The proposed site on Grahamvale Road in Shepparton aligns with the objectives of Greater Shepparton City Council’s master plan for the railway precinct and is supported by key stakeholders.
The location of the proposed stabling facility enables the stabling tracks to be located within the rail corridor. The driver facilities are proposed to be located on privately owned land adjacent to the rail line.
The site has operational and technical advantages over other shortlisted sites and because the site is in an industrial area, it will minimise community disruption and environmental impacts including noise and visual impacts.
Its proximity to Shepparton Station also means no further track upgrades are required. Rail Projects Victoria will ensure the project is delivered in line with planning approval requirements to minimise any impacts of the facility on the surrounding area as much as possible.
What are the next steps?
We are in the process of appointing a contractor to deliver Stage 2 of the Shepparton Line Upgrade, with contract award expected in the coming months.
Construction on Stage 2 of the project is due to commence late this year and is targeted for completion in late 2022.
Who is responsible?
Rail Projects Victoria is responsible for the planning and delivery of the project on behalf of the Victorian Government.