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    Coat of ArmsMedia Release
    Premier and Minister for the Arts
    The Honourable Anna Bligh

    Rail infrastructure fast-tracked for growth

    Premier and Minister for the Arts
    The Honourable Anna Bligh

    Monday, June 07, 2010

    Rail infrastructure fast-tracked for growth

    Managing population growth, boosting public transport and protecting the environment will be a major focus in tomorrow’s State Budget with Premier Anna Bligh today announcing construction of a major new rail line would be brought forward by two years.

    Ms Bligh said the State Budget would include funding to accelerate the new $646 million 10km rail line to Springfield by two years.

    Work is already underway to extend the region’s rail line from Darra to Richlands.

    “Before the last election we said infrastructure investment and the jobs it supported were our top priority,” Ms Bligh said.

    “Bringing forward the extension of the rail line all the way to Springfield will give its 18,000 residents access to world class public transport.

    “And it will mean a massive investment in jobs, public transport and the environment.”

    Work is already underway to extend the region’s rail network from Darra to a new station at Richlands.

    Work on the stage one of the project began in 2008 and is expected to be completed next year. It includes 5km of new rail line and 4km of road upgrade. The Richlands railway station will include a 650 space carpark.

    Ms Bligh said special new local bus services would be established when the new Springfield rail station was operational to encourage commuters to take public transport all the way to work.

    “Quality public transport like this not only means that people can live further away from the city without having to drive but it also delivers major environmental wins as well,” Ms Bligh said.

    “The new line will provide a direct link between Springfield and Brisbane which will mean a lot to the local community - better access, cheaper travel, less congestion, and fewer delays.

    “Our government believes in public transport – as a means to get people out of their cars and where they need to travel faster, to cut congestion, reduce greenhouse gases and manage growth.

    “We’re already investing almost $400m to build a new line from Darra to Richlands and getting the rail line to Springfield as soon as possible is a priority.”

    The new Springfield rail line could be open by 2013, two years ahead of the current schedule.

    The 2010-11 State Budget includes $104 million to complete the new rail line from Darra to Richlands and $25 million to complete the third track from Corinda to Darra.

    Ms Bligh said the bring-forward of the rail line to Springfield showed the State Government‘s commitment to its go west for growth strategy.

    “We’ve been consistent in our approach to directing growth to the western corridor,” Ms Bligh said.

    “And we’ve already secured a corridor next to the Centenary Highway from Springfield to Yamanto for a future rail line.”

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