McGowan Government to return rail manufacturing to Midland area
- McGowan Government selects Bellevue as preferred location of new railcar facility
- Three consortia shortlisted to build 246 new railcars
- $1.6 billion project with 50 per cent local manufacturing target to create local jobs
The McGowan Government is set to revive the Midland area's rich railway history, with Bellevue announced as the preferred site for the new METRONET railcar manufacturing facility.
The proposed manufacturing facility will also be co-located with the Public Transport Authority's next railcar depot, where Transperth will carry out maintenance of the broader train fleet.
Located just one kilometre from the historic Midland Workshops, which for nearly a century provided hundreds of railway jobs for workers and apprentices, the new production facility site in Bellevue will bring more employment opportunities to the area.
Over the next decade, the facility will be used to assemble much of the extra 246 railcars required to service METRONET projects and replace ageing trains on the Transperth network.
A Development Application for the depot facility on the same site is currently before the Metropolitan Redevelopment Authority, with approval expected in the coming weeks.
Meanwhile, three consortia have been shortlisted to participate in a tender for the supply of the new trains:
- Alstom Transport Australia Pty Ltd
- Momentum West (CAF and UGL)
- EDI Rail - Bombardier Transportation Pty Ltd
A supplier will be selected in early 2019 and a key consideration will be their ability and commitment to manufacture or assemble 50 per cent of railcars in WA. This is significantly different to the policy under the previous Liberal National Government, as most railcars were manufactured in Queensland or overseas, with only two per cent of the work completed in Western Australia.
The first stage of the project involves the delivery, in 2021, of 102 new railcars (17 six-car sets) to service the new METRONET projects as they come online.
A follow-on order for 144 railcars (24 six-car sets), to replace the ageing A-series railcars, will also be included in the tender and are expected to be delivered between 2023 and 2028.
Comments attributed to Premier Mark McGowan:
"It's exciting we are in a position to bring trains well and truly back into the Midland precinct at a new purpose-built facility in Bellevue.
"METRONET is not only a world-class public transport system, but will create new opportunities for local workers.
"The key target of 50 per cent will help revitalise WA's manufacturing industry and put WA jobs first."
Comments attributed to Transport Minister Rita Saffioti:
"The Midland area is entering a very exciting era - projects like the Bellevue Rail Extension, new Midland Station, redevelopment of the historic workshops, and now the return of rail production to the area, are all starting to gain momentum.
"The Midland-Bellevue area will be involved in the production of new trains and their ongoing maintenance works, creating sustainable local jobs for local people and supporting ongoing expansion of our vital passenger rail network.
"This Government's investment in the area will ensure Midland and Bellevue serve as important commercial centres and transit centres for the wider Swan and Hills areas.
"The successful proponent for the railcar construction contract will have input into the final design of the facilities at Bellevue, and construction work will start in 2019."
Comments attributed to Midland MLA Michelle Roberts:
"This is great news for Midland and the eastern region.
"It will provide local jobs and opportunities for our community.
"Bellevue is a local and strategic location - it will be great for the region."