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Vic Regional Rail Link 'will change way Melb functions'
08/08/2012 - Work has started on a multi-billion dollar rail project that will improve transport links to regional Victoria and provide better public transport to Melbourne's booming west.
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Federal Attorney-General and local member Nicola Roxon joined federal Infrastructure Minister Anthony Albanese and Victorian Public Transport Minister Terry Mulder at West Footscray train station on Tuesday for the sod turning on the 7.5km Footscray to Deer Park section of the regional rail link.
The Footscray to Deer Park section of the project is the first piece of work in the Regional Rail Link.
Albanese said the rail link would not only deliver a more efficient rail system for suburban Melbourne, but for the three key regional cities of Bendigo, Ballarat and Geelong.
"This will make an enormous difference to Melbourne, the way it functions," Albanese said on Tuesday.
He said it was the first piece of passenger rail infrastructure since the Glen Waverley line opened in 1930.
The federal government has provided $3.2 billion for the project which is estimated to cost $5 billion.
The state government will fund the balance.
Later this year work will begin on the 25km of track that will connect Deer Park to West Werribee.
Mulder said a station user panel established by the Victorian government had worked to ensure the train stations built as part of the rail link would be accessible to everyone.
The refurbished station at West Footscray will be equipped with a lift, stairs and ramps to ensure accessibility.
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