Former Deputy PM of Australia, Tim Fischer, has advocated not waiting until 2031 for the Tullamarine rail link from the CBD of Melbourne to Australia’s only 4 runway capable ‘non curfew’ airport. In a statement to WATTRAIN:
Another decade without any breakthrough with public transport to this key hub airport of Tullamarine would be a disaster. The one freeway would go into total gridlock for four hours a day, jamming the bus / coach service in the process.
Existing Tram Route 59 to Airport West currently runs from the Melbourne CBD in the direction of Tullamarine, the solution is to extend Tram Route 59 just 7.6 kms to T4 at Tullamarine and so ease the burden and provide a back up. This can be done in two years so by mid 2021, ten years ahead of the heavy rail link.
Some domestic travellers, along with workers at Tullamarine living in the north west quartile of Melbourne would also flock to the extended Tram 59 as well, if it made it through to key Terminal T4.
I note with interest Heathrow London has both the Piccadilly Line and the Paddington Express , plus plans for a direct link from Reading to the west of Heathrow straight into the Terminal Loops. Some planners say Tullamarine will soon pass Mascot at Sydney in usage and in a few years will equal Heathrow.
Mr Fischer added that he had spent a lot of time using Tram 59 when recently staying at the Peter Mac Hospital on the existing route, whilst not a perfect solution there is much in its favour to quickly build 7.6 kms in light rail standard gauge – further the proposed ‘Higher Speed Rail’ projects from Geelong to Melbourne / Tullamarine, Newcastle / Sydney / Wollongong and Brisbane / Sunshine Coast should all be done in standard gauge and 25 kV AC (more efficient) power systems as per around the world.