The announcement in December 2018 by NSW Premier Gladys Berejiklian that the NSW government “would start work on a fast rail network in the next term of government” was received with a degree of cynicism, given its proximity to the 2019 state election and a history of failed high speed rail plans and strategies. However, there are some elements of the announcement which are worth exploring. One stands out – the similarities of the NSW initiative with the successful regional rail strategy adopted by the Victorian government.
A recent analysis by Alex Gooding on the Gooding Davies Consultancy Strategic Matters blog considers the implications of the NSW announcement and the history of Victoria’s successful V/Line strategy and the recent Regional Rail Revival Program. The conclusion – while NSW presents more complex challenges than its southern neighbour, whichever party forms government after the state election should follow Victoria’s lead in making a medium-term investment in moderately fast trains.
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