By Stella Tzobanakis

A control centre to support next-generation high-capacity signalling (HCS) as part of the new $11 billion Metro Tunnel project will be built in Sunshine.

Public Transport Minister Jacinta Allan said the centre will monitor and operate the advanced technology of HCS between Watergardens and South Yarra “allowing for real-time tracking of trains”, as well as oversee signalling maintenance. Ms Allan said HCS allows trains to safely run close together meaning they can run more often. It will enable trains to run every two to three minutes, “creating a ‘turn up and go’ train network for Melbourne”.

“We’re investing in cutting edge technology that will get people home safer and sooner, every day,” Ms Allan said.

The signalling will operate the 65 new high-capacity trains being built in Victoria which will run on the Sunbury to Cranbourne-Pakenham line via the Metro Tunnel.

Ms Allan said the control centre location is yet-to-be determined but will be built near the Sunshine station. She said it will be staffed by experts who will monitor trains on the new Metro Tunnel line. It will be staffed 24 hours a day, 365 days a year.

She said construction is expected to begin in early 2019 and will create more than 100 jobs.

Ms Allan said the majority of employees will be signallers responsible for co-ordinating train movements between Sunbury and South Yarra, including the five new underground stations.

“A small signalling maintenance team will also operate from the facility,” she said.

Ms Allan said Sunshine had been selected as the site for the control centre because it is a connection point for metropolitan, regional and freight services. Another control centre will be built in Dandenong.