Construction of the long-touted rail link between Southern Cross Station and Melbourne Airport will begin within a decade, according to Premier Daniel Andrews.

The plan, which includes a new major train hub to be built at Sunshine linking the city to the airport, has been labelled a game-changer for the west by Brimbank mayor Margaret Giudice.

Cr Giudice said an airport link with a stop at Sunshine had the potential to deliver significant economic benefits to Brimbank, with potential jobs growth and tourism opportunities likely to follow.

“Brimbank council welcomes the Victorian premier’s announcement that the Melbourne Airport rail link will proceed with a stop at Sunshine as a transformational project that will unlock potential in Melbourne’s west,”
Cr Giudice said.

“There’s no doubt this is a game-changer for Sunshine and for Melbourne’s west.”

“If planned well, this project could transform the way people in the west live, travel and work.

“An airport link with a stop at Sunshine will enable people from across Melbourne’s west and regional areas such as Geelong, Ballarat and Bendigo to interchange and travel directly to the airport.

“It will also help to reduce congestion on Brimbank’s roads by providing an alternative and sustainable mode of transport to and from Melbourne Airport and regional Victoria.”

Mr Andrews made the rail link announcement at a Victorian Chamber of Commerce and Industry gathering in Geelong last Thursday.

“By the time the Metro Tunnel is completed in 2026, construction work will be well under way on an airport rail link,” he said.

“This sort of investment needs to be done right. It needs to be done properly and it needs to benefit every single Victorian.

“It can’t just funnel tourists and business people between the CBD and the airport.”

Cr Giudice said the council looked forward to working with the government to ensure the project’s maximum benefit to the community.