The first steel structures are now in place in Melbourne’s Pakenham East for the maintenance facilities, stabling yards, and a driver training simulator for Victoria’s new high capacity trains.
Earthworks are also on their way to completion at the site, which is reportedly of a size comparable to 60 MCGs. Approximately 400 workers will eventually be at work on the construction site next year, while 100 workers will be needed at the site in the long-term for the ongoing maintenance of the trains.
The Victorian government has invested $2.3 billion in the High Capacity Metro Trains Project – a public-private partnership between the government and Evolution Rail (a consortium consisting of Downer, CRRC, and Plenary) – which will deliver 65 new trains, the first of which will appear on the Cranbourne-Pakenham line in the middle of 2019.
The government is hoping that the project will establish Victoria as a future train supplier, both in Australia and internationally, thereby providing more local manufacturing jobs. The trains are to be built in both China and Victoria, with the final assembly work occurring at Downer’s Newport railyard in the west of Melbourne.
Traction and electrical auxiliary power systems for the trains will be built in Morwell by Times Electric Australia, while SIGMA Air Conditioning will supply the trains’ heating, ventilation and air conditioning systems from their existing Derrimut facilities in Melbourne’s west.
Ultimate (Australia) Transportation Equipment, based in Melbourne’s south-east, has received the contract to supply and assemble the passenger seats, hand and grab rails and other interior fittings for the new trains, while Fire Protection Technologies in Waverly has won the six-year contract to supply the trains’ fire detection systems.
“Our bigger, better, next-generation trains will move more people and create 1,100 jobs across the state,” state industry and employment minister Ben Carroll said.
“We’re creating local jobs by building more trains to get Victorians home safer and sooner.”