A HIGH-speed rail network connecting Sydney, Brisbane and Melbourne, including a stop at Lismore, that could be operational by 2025, has the support of Page MP Kevin Hogan and Deputy PM Warren Truss.
The ambitious timeline for the $84 billion high speed rail link was revealed in a report prepared by Beyond Zero Emissions in collaboration with the German Aerospace Centre and the University of Melbourne Energy Research Institute.
Featuring 21 high speed rail stations connecting 11 regional centres and seven major cities, the proposed 1799km rail link would have passengers travel between Sydney, and either Brisbane or Melbourne, in just three hours.
HIGH-SPEED RAIL: WHAT'S PROPOSED
- Melbourne to Sydney cost $40 billion
- Sydney to Brisbane cost $44 billion
- (Costs include rail line construction, stations, trains, management and contingencies.)
- 1799km rail line, including 81km of tunnels and 98km of elevated sections.
- Estimated annual gross operating revenue by 2030 is $7 billion
- The estimated revenue would pay for the high speed rail link in 40 years.
If constructed, according to the report, this would put 60%, or 12.5 million Australians, within 50km of an high speed rail station.
Lismore would be the first regional station southbound from Brisbane, followed by 10 other regional destinations including Grafton, Coffs Harbour, Taree, Goulburn, Wagga Wagga, Shepparton and Seymour.
Major cities on the proposed route include Brisbane, Gold Coast, Newcastle, Central Coast, Sydney, Canberra and Melbourne.
The 87 trains needed to operate the high speed rail link could run on 100% renewable energy, eliminating carbon emissions, while reducing the average of 850 daily aircraft movements between Sydney and Melbourne.
Mr Hogan said the construction of a high-speed rail link along the east coast of Australia would be of great economic and social benefit, not only to Page but to all of Australia.
He said he had spoken several times to Minister for Infrastructure and Regional Development, Mr Truss, who supported the high speed rail concept.
"I know the Deputy Prime Minister wrote to the transport ministers of Queensland, NSW, the ACT and Victoria about the role of a high-speed rail meeting future travel demand, the priorities and planning arrangements of the jurisdiction to protect and preserve the identified high speed rail corridor."