The Illawarra Business Chamber has today called for bipartisan support of an Illawarra Transport Priority List that would direct funding to both road and rail projects, underpinned by evidence.

 

Research commissioned by Illawarra First has established the clear need for investment in the Illawarra’s transport network, with a series of constraints on the corridor between the Illawarra and Greater Sydney expected to cost the economy $640 million per annum by 2031.
 
Passenger journeys on the South Coast Line already take a minimum of 87 minutes to reach Central Station at an average speed of 56 km/h, and will displace freight movements by 2030 (according to Infrastructure NSW) which will have major impacts on the region’s economy.
 
The Illawarra’s key road connections with Greater Sydney, being Mt Ousley and Picton Road, both carry significant heavy vehicle traffic of 15 percent and 25 percent respectively and will reach peak hour capacity by 2025.
 
Illawarra Business Chamber Executive Director Adam Zarth today outlined an Illawarra Transport Priority List, listing key projects requiring timely delivery to prevent the suppression of the Illawarra’s economy.
 
“Improvements to the Illawarra’s road and rail connections are both required to prevent major constraints hitting our economy by 2030,” said Mr Zarth.
 
“Roads cannot do all the economic heavy lifting, and rail investments are needed well before the South Coast Line reaches capacity by 2030.”
 
“Our priority is the delivery of the South West Illawarra Rail Link which will deliver benefits of $74 million per annum and will ensure we do not miss out on the opportunities at the Western Sydney Aerotropolis which will include 200,000 jobs.”
 
“Research found that upgrading the South Coast Line would involve expenditure of up to $2 billion to reduce travel times by 15-20 minutes each way. This would include duplication of the line around Helensburgh to allow an express service, as well as line straightening (involving tunnelling) between Scarborough and Stanwell Park, and again between Helensburgh and Waterfall.”
 
“In terms of roads, the Mt Ousley Interchange and Widening project together with the duplication of Picton Road will deliver $88 million in economic benefits and are required by 2025 to prevent them reaching peak hour capacity.”
 
“Whereas all three stages of the F6 Extension are needed to deliver the full, $67 million per annum benefit to the Illawarra economy and should be delivered by 2031.”
 
ENDS
 
Contact:  Adam Zarth 0404 146 829
 
 
Illawarra Transport Priority List
 
Transport upgrade Required by Reduction in travel time Economic benefits (to the Illawarra) per annum Cost (est.) Source
South West Illawarra Rail Link 2028 (To Campbelltown) 31 minutes
(To Liverpool)
34 minutes
$74 million $1.7 billion Illawarra First Rail Connectivity Study, SMART Infrastructure Facility, University of Wollongong, Aug 2017
Mt Ousley Interchange and Widening projects 2025 TBC $46 million $220-330 million (widening project) Illawarra First/NRMA Road Connectivity Study, VLC, May 2018
Picton Road Upgrade (dual carriageway) 2025 TBC $42 million $180-220 million Illawarra First/NRMA Road Connectivity Study, VLC, May 2018
F6 Extension (Stages 1, 2 & 3 to Loftus) 2025 (To Sydney CBD)
27 minutes
$67 million $8.6-10.4 billion Illawarra First/NRMA Road Connectivity Study, VLC, May 2018
South Coast Line upgrade 2030 (To Central Station)
15-30 minutes
$55 million $2 billion Illawarra First Rail Connectivity Study, SMART Infrastructure Facility, University of Wollongong
 
Links to sources:
 
Road report: http://www.nswbusinesschamber.com.au/NSWBC/media/Regional/Illawarra/ILWRA-to-GS-CONECTIVITY-REPORT-FINAL-ELECTROINC-v2.pdf
 
Rail report: https://www.nswbusinesschamber.com.au/NSWBC/media/WebsiteResources/PDF/Master-Final-Report-Rail-Research-July-2017.pdf
 

Media Contact:

Adam Zarth Executive Director, Illawarra Business Chamber T: 02 4223 0302M: 0404 146 829