Epping North residents ready to fight for rail link

Northern Star Weekly
5 September 2017
Laura Michell

TrainMetro

Epping North and Wollert residents are calling on the state government to extend the train line to Wollert within 10 years.

The Auroa Community Association recently re-established its transport working group to examine the transport issues plaguing Epping North and Wollert.

The group has since made a submission to Public Transport Minister Jacinta Allan calling for a rail line extension from near Lalor station to Wollert.

In the submission, group spokesman Tony Francis said Epping North was designed around a rail line.

He said residents were struggling to commute to work and carry out day-to-day activities without access to a local train station.

“Epping North and Wollert are in an area with a rapidly growing population and worsening road congestion which is at breaking point. The rail extension would deal with worsening road congestion by providing a major alternative to cars and buses,” Mr Francis said.

“Congestion costs impose great hardship on people who were basically deceived into residing in Epping North and Wollert.”

In the submission, the group said that the area was already home to close to 28,000 people, with the population expected to reach 96,000 by 2037.

It said delaying the rain line until more people move into the area would create more problems and reduce liveability.

The submission follows a 2016 report from Infrastructure Victoria that recommended the government complete a feasibility study for a high-capacity transport link to connect Wollert and Epping North to the rail network within five years.

The independent advisory body said the link will be needed in 15 to 30 years and would provide a viable alternative to using cars for local trips and commuting to Melbourne.

Reference

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