Sydney to Newcastle in just 45 minutes? New plan for high-speed trains across NSW

Sydney to Newcastle in just 45 minutes? New push for a massive high-speed rail network across NSW to cut journey times and develop regions

  • High-speed rail strategy document reveals plan for new rail lines in NSW
  • Journey times from Sydney to other parts of NSW would be reduced
  • For example, the drive from Parramatta to Gosford would only take 25 minutes

High-speed rail lines could link Sydney with Newcastle, Wollongong and the west of the state as part of a long-term plan to boost public transport in NSW.

The plan was revealed in a confidential 320-page draft strategy by Transport for NSW, and has yet to be presented to cabinet.

Dedicated high-speed rail lines could halve journey time between Sydney and Newcastle

According to the draft plan, the main interchanges connecting high-speed trains to the rest of Sydney’s rail network will be at Parramatta, Epping and Campbelltown.

The strategy says the centers will help provide “easy access” to job centers and the health and education sectors.

“The transformation will include both new dedicated high-speed rail lines to enable train speeds of up to 250 km/h, and improvements to the existing network to increase speed on these sections to a maximum of 160 km/h. h,” he says.

“It also includes new trains and new or improved stations which, combined with radically shorter journey times, will bring about a step change in the customer experience.”

The strategy document estimates that the fast trains will reduce journey times between Parramatta and Newcastle from 2.5 hours to one hour.

Parramatta to Gosford would take just 25 minutes, and a dedicated rapid train line from Sydney to Canberra could halve journey times to 90 minutes.

However, don’t expect the project to be finished anytime soon.

The Transport for NSW strategy says dedicated rail lines should be built in sections over more than two decades.

Meanwhile, the cost of building the high-speed rail line between Sydney and Newcastle has been estimated at tens of billions of dollars, and politicians have made no funds available for the project.

Minister for Infrastructure, Cities and Active Transport, Rob Stokes, said the NSW state government had yet to approve or review the document.

Labor leader Chris Minns said the government was already struggling to manage the current rail network and was skeptical of high-speed rail plans in New South Wales.

“Most communities don’t have regular trains, let alone another NSW government thought bubble,” he told the Sydney Morning Herald.

Motorists could be forced to pay a fee just to enter the CBD in a bid to ease congestion on NSW roads and encourage the use of public transport (pictured, a cyclist in Sydney)

Motorists could be forced to pay a fee just to enter the CBD in a bid to ease congestion on NSW roads and encourage the use of public transport (pictured, a cyclist in Sydney)

The same document has also been launched introducing a ‘congestion charge’ just for driving in Sydney’s CBD.

The plan would see motorists charged just for entering CBD boundaries – as drivers are in London – to encourage the use of public transport

“Road users are not paying the true costs of driving” and need a “nudge” to reconsider leaving their cars at home,” the document says.

The document also suggests that speed limits on suburban streets in the city be reduced to 30 km/h to further encourage cyclists and pedestrians.

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