Australian Greens Senator for NSW, Dr Mehreen Faruqi, has announced that the Australian Greens will set aside $1.5 billion to start construction of the Thirroul Tunnel to slash rail travel times to Sydney for the people of the Illawarra as part of their Federal Election platform.
Senator Faruqi, who is also a civil and environmental engineer, said:
"We know that thousands of people travel between the Illawarra and Sydney every day and face overcrowded trains, long commutes and a lack of seating . It doesn't have to be this way, the Illawarra deserves world class, 21st Century public transport.
"As a civil engineeer it is frustrating to see Government's commit to building multibillion dollar toll roads, like the F6, rather than invest in real solutions at a fraction of the cost, like the Thirroul tunnel.
"The Greens will set aside $1.5 billion dollars of Federal Funding to go towards the Thirroul Tunnel. This will cover almost half the expected price tag and shave nearly 25 minutes off each trip.
"This will have a huge impact on the thousands of people who commute to Sydney. We can deliver a faster, more frequent and comfortable train journey. This means more time to enjoy with family, friends and loved ones. The Illawarra deserves nothing less.
"We know that the only way to reduce the commute time between Sydney and the Illawarra is to build the Thirroul Tunnel. So we just need to get on and do it. People have been waiting for too long already" she concluded.
Senator Rice said:
"The Thirroul rail tunnel would be a game changer for people living on the South Coast and cost a lot less than the F6 toll road. The Federal Government should be putting $1.5 billion towards this critical rail project, not toll roads that will only add more pressure to family budgets and won't do anything to solve congestion".
The Greens will cancel wasteful federal spending on dirty toll roads across the country and redirect the money into public transport projects. We will set aside $1.5 billion of that funding to go towards the Thirroul Tunnel. This will cover almost half the expected price tag and will shave 22 minutes of each trip.