Eastern Metro MP Rod Barton has told the Andrew’s Government to “eat the frog” and include the difficult Box Hill to Doncaster leg of the Suburban Rail Loop as part of stage 1.
Last week the government announced stage 1 of the project would connect Box Hill and Cheltenham, leaving Doncaster and the City of Manningham out of the plan.
“Since 1890, rail to Doncaster has been considered and proposed by State Governments in numerous State Transport plans. A 2011 government study on Doncaster Rail deemed the project necessary and viable. Yet after 128 years, Doncaster is still waiting,” said Mr Barton.
“Of all of the metropolitan municipalities, the City of Manningham is the only one that functions on bus services alone and its student and worker populations are desperately under-serviced.”
For students from Manningham who attend or seek to attend Monash, Latrobe or Swinburne University public transport is a frustrating experience. They are forced to take multiple public transport services which take double the average drive time to reach their destination.
“This is unacceptable and is letting Victorian students down.
“I understand that the Suburban Rail Loop will be an extensive and long running project, but I feel extending Stage 1 to include Doncaster is not an unreasonable request,” he said.
Mr Barton said the geography from Box Hill to Doncaster was the most challenging part of this project and sensible planning would put the hardest section first, least the whole project fall over.
“As Mark Twain once said – if it’s your job to eat the frog, best do it early in the morning. And if you must eat two frogs, eat the biggest first,” he said.
Mr Barton has asked the Minister for Transport Infrastructure Jacinta Allan to reevaluate Stage 1 and extend the first stage of the Suburban Rail Loop to include Doncaster to ensure that Victorians are better connected as quickly and effectively as possible.
I asked the Minister for Transport Infrastructure to re-evaluate stage 1 of the Suburban Rail Loop project and extend the first stage to include Doncaster and ensure that Victorians are better connected as quickly and as effectively as possible.