The Albanese Government’s cancellation of Geelong Fast Rail is a shocking betrayal of commuters in western Melbourne, Geelong and south-west Victoria.
The $2 billion in Commonwealth funding for the rail project, delivered by the former Coalition government, was a vital investment in faster train services.
In axeing this massive investment for our region, the Albanese Government has treated regional Victorians with contempt.
This is another kick in the guts from a callous, city-centric Labor government.
As the fastest growing region in the country, Corio MP Richard Marles and Corangamite MP Libby Coker have shown they are not up to the job of fighting for our region.
Geelong Fast Rail was set to deliver major benefits for our economy as well as reduced travel times for commuters.
Since Prime Minister Albanese was elected, our region has suffered not only shocking cost-of-living pressures but a failure to invest in any new infrastructure project in two Labor budgets. Hanwha’s defence project at Avalon Airport was also savagely cut. Under Labor, regional Victoria is being starved of funding.
Under the $4 billion Geelong Fast Rail project, in partnership with the Victorian Government, preliminary works on construction of a new express rail track between Werribee and Laverton were underway. This project was expected to create some 2,800 construction jobs.
Other infrastructure projects axed by the Albanese Government in Victoria include:
• Calder Freeway – Gap Road to the M80 Ring Rd;
• the Rutherglen heavy vehicle alternative route;
• Western Freeway upgrade – M80 Ring Rd to Ferris Rd;
• McKoy St – Hume Freeway intersection upgrade;
• Goulburn Valley Highway – Shepparton bypass stage one;
• Victoria Faster Rail Corridor investigations; and
• the Melbourne Inland Rail Intermodal Terminal business case.
The Coalition has a very proud record of investing in regional Victoria. I condemn these shocking infrastructure cuts by this callous Albanese Labor Government.