VLocity trains will soon be running on Warrnambool’s train line if the Liberal National coalition wins government in this year’s state election.
A $633-million order for 96 new rail cars capable of speeds of up to 160km/h will be placed in June 2019, about six months after a possible November election.
All four of Warrnambool’s train services will be replaced by VLocity trains during the first-term of a coalition government, with the promise of a faster and more reliable service.
The new fleet will be built in Victoria and will allow the existing 1980s-era diesel-hauled trains to be gradually phased out of service on the Warrnambool, Shepparton, Albury, Bairnsdale and Swan Hill lines.
Opposition leader Matthew Guy on Sunday said he would bring Victoria’s regional rail into the 21st century.
Member for South West Coast Roma Britnell said that passengers on the Warrnambool line have had a second-rate service for too long.
“We'll give our rail service the boost it desperately needs, reducing travel times with new faster and more comfortable trains,” she said.
Nationals leader Peter Walsh said slow and unreliable train services were holding the development of country communities back.
“We will turbo charge the development of country Victoria, starting with brand new trains,” he said.
The State Labor Government on Sunday called for the Federal Government to release funding so work could begin on the planned $114m upgrade to the Warrnambool line as well as further level crossing upgrades.
Last year, Premier Daniel Andrews promised upgrades to the Warrnambool line under the Regional Rail Revival program that would pave the way for VLocity trains to eventually run on the line.
The state government said the promised Federal Government money hadn’t been delivered.