The Western Sydney Regional Organisation of Councils (WSROC) has expressed disappointment with the number and location of stations along the new Western Sydney Airport Metro line, arguing that it does not serve the needs of the local community. WSROC President, Cllr Barry Calvert, said “I am disappointed that this 23-kilometre rail link, which promises to service Greater Western Sydney, only has four stops.
“In lobbying for a north-south rail link, councils were clear that the purpose was to boost intra-regional connectivity and economic development in Greater Western Sydney,” he said.
“The fact there are only two stops between St Marys and Badgerys Creek demonstrates that the Metro’s primary aim is to get travellers to the new airport as quickly as possible rather than connecting communities with opportunities.
“The Government would do well to remember that railway stations, not the lines between them, are the catalysts for investment, jobs and liveable communities. At present, the Airport link does not serve Western Sydney economically or socially.
“The proposed route does not connect communities such as Glenmore Park, nor does it propose new stations which could facilitate brand new communities with rail links from day one,” said Cllr Calvert.
“The 23-kilometre Western Sydney Airport Metro line is the same length as the route between Central to Parramatta. The latter accommodates 18 rail stations.
“Even a modest 10 railway stations between St Marys and Badgerys Creek would open-up significant opportunity to plan commercial and town centres, schools, health facilities and villages in close proximity to public transport. The town centres surrounding these stations could easily deliver 20,000 jobs collectively — almost as many as Western Sydney Airport is expected to generate, but in a much shorter time frame.
In addition, it would create a highly liveable corridor up to one kilometre on either side of the tracks. Properly planned access to these railway stations would facilitate walking and cycling as part of the commute, making a substantial contribution to the obesity and diabetes epidemic in Western Sydney.
Investing in the Western Sydney Airport Metro line could lead to significant economic and liveability outcomes for Western Sydney, but this can only happen where there are opportunities to get on and off the train,” said Cllr Calvert.