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McGowan Government returns railcar manufacturing to WA

Premier Mark McGowan and Transport Minister Rita Saffioti today officially opened the Bellevue METRONET Railcar Facility, marking WA Day with the return of railcar manufacturing to Western Australia.

A total of 246 electric railcars and six new Australind diesel railcars will be built, tested and maintained at the new Bellevue facility, which has been manufactured using 8500 tonnes of locally fabricated steel.  

The project returns rail manufacturing to the Midland area for the first time since 1994 when the old Midland Railway Workshops were closed. 

At least 50 per cent of the contract value will be delivered locally. 

With the facility now handed over to operator Alstom, the first of the McGowan Government's nine current METRONET projects is now complete.

A number of local suppliers have been awarded contracts on the project, supporting local jobs:

  • Australian company McConnell, which will establish a dedicated facility in WA to manufacture railcar passenger seats;
  • Aerison, a WA company with fabrication facility in Forrestfield, to provide cab structures, battery boxes and fuel tanks;
  • Knorr-Bremse, will supply air-conditioning and air supply equipment and brake components from its WA premises;
  • Pyrotek, will be supplying insulation and floor panels;
  • Austbreck, will be supplying pantographs from its Kewdale facility;
  • Hofmann Engineering will be delivering bogie frames from their existing WA premises;
  • Vector Lifting, based in Cockburn, delivering bogie turntables and lifting jacks;
  • Kulbardi, a WA indigenous company which supplied furniture for the facility;
  • Parker Hannifin, which will supply piping from their Welshpool facility;
  • Camco, based in Canning Vale, which provides jigs and fixtures for Bellevue;
  • Unique Metal, a Wangara sheet metal fabricator which will provide metallic components;
  • Dellner, will procure components from WA suppliers and assemble the couplers in Australia;
  • Chess Engineering, from Welshpool, which is assembling the fitting stations at the facility.

The $1.25 billion railcar contract, awarded to Alstom, is the biggest order of railcars in WA history and came in $347 million under budget.

Work on the new trains will commence later this year, with the first locally made train anticipated to roll onto the tracks in late 2022.

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