Passenger trains return to Mernda for the first time since 1959 from first service Sunday August 26, when the South Morang line becomes the re-opened Mernda line.
Premier Daniel Andrews this morning joined Minister for Public Transport Jacinta Allan, Member for Yan Yean Danielle Green and Member for Mill Park Lily D’Ambrosio to announce the opening date of the new line, and the new timetable that will see hundreds of new services run along it and neighbouring corridor lines.
“This is the first new rail line in 60 years. We said we’d deliver better public transport to get people in Melbourne’s north where they need to go, sooner – and that’s exactly what we’ve done.
“Whether it’s here in Mernda or across our growing suburbs, we’re investing in the services local families need,” Andrews said.
With a date now locked in for the opening of the Mernda rail line, this also means new services for the metropolitan train timetable will commence August 26 with new weekday services added to the Mernda, Werribee, Hurstbridge and Dandenong Corridor lines.
The new Mernda Station will give passengers access to 982 services to the city every week, with two new and seven realigned bus routes connecting passengers with the three new stations on the Mernda line.
It will be the first time a passenger train has run to Mernda since the former Whittlesea line was decommissioned in 1959.
“It was a Labor Government that extended the line from Epping to South Morang and the Andrews Labor Government will open this new rail line ahead of schedule and within budget – we’re getting it done,” Allan said.
Members of the public will be able to check out the three brand new stations on the Mernda line before they open, with a community day planned for Sunday, August 19.
Driver training along the new Mernda line will begin in the coming weeks.
Part of the Andrews Labor Government’s investment in our rapidly growing outer suburbs, the new Mernda line will mean families in Melbourne’s north have the transport they need to get home, and to and from work, sooner.
The first test train ran to Mernda earlier this month, testing the track, overhead wiring and rail infrastructure, confirming passenger trains can commence in late August – well ahead of schedule.
Following the success of the test trains, the construction team has been working around the clock along the rail corridor, including putting the finishing touches on the three new stations.
190 new metropolitan train services will be added every week across these lines as well as hundreds of extended services.
Additional services will also run on the Dandenong corridor, Werribee Line and Hurstbridge Line, with passengers living between Eltham and the city offered more options to get to work, school or leisure activities with 35 new and extended services each week.
The new timetable will help make public transport a convenient and attractive transport option in the lead up to the opening of the Metro Tunnel, which will create space to run more trains, more often, right across Melbourne.
The three new Mernda line stations will cater for up to 8,000 commuters a day, helping to ease congestion along Plenty and Yan Yean roads. New shared walking and cycling paths will connect the stations and provide alternative transport options.
“I look forward to welcoming visitors travelling by train to our wonderful region from next month. This long-awaited investment will be welcomed by Mernda locals,” Green said.
Full timetables will be available from late July at ptv.vic.gov.au
Mernda station opened in 1889 – first as South Yan Yean – then Mernda from 1913 until closing in 1959. The line to Whittlesea was dismantled during the 1970s.