Direct Sunshine Coast Rail Line on track for delivery

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A new heavy rail connection is tracking towards construction on the Sunshine Coast, that will make a trip to Brisbane at least 45 minutes faster than a car.

The Miles Government is committing an initial $2.75 billion to deliver Stage 1 of the Direct Sunshine Coast Rail Line project, which includes protection of the updated rail alignment all the way to Maroochydore.

The first stage will see a 19 km dual track built from Beerwah to Caloundra, the longest spur line in the south-east passenger network.

Staged delivery will see the line ultimately run to Birtinya and Maroochydore. This will deliver faster rail to the Sunshine Coast, with trains able to reach speeds of 140km per hour on some sections of the track.

Sunshine Coast Stage Map

The Beerwah to Caloundra stage could be operational in time for Brisbane 2032, subject to a matched funding agreement from the Federal Government.

The Sunshine Coast is one of the fastest growing regions in the state, and is forecast to be home to 600,000 people by 2046.

Modelling shows most of the population growth will be concentrated along the first stage of the rail line, around Caloundra South (Aura).

Stage 1 of the Direct Sunshine Coast Rail Line will be a significant enabler for new housing, including supply for 50,000 people at Caloundra South and up to 100,000 people at Beerwah East.

It’s expected the initial stage of the project will accelerate the delivery of more than 3,000 affordable and diverse homes already planned within the region.

The funding envelope for Stage 1 is expected to be between $5.5 billion and $7 billion, with final costs to be confirmed at the completion of the procurement phase.

A ‘funding envelope’ is an approach taken on other similar projects around the world, allowing costs to be finalised when contracts are executed.

It’s expected that Stage 1 of project will support 2,200 good jobs in the region.

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