Eastern Victoria

Gippsland rail services

Thursday, 16 November 2017

Gippsland rail services
Ms SHING (Eastern Victoria) (11:47) — The matter I wish to raise today is for the attention of the Minister for Public Transport, Ms Allan. It relates to the Gippsland line and to the improvements that are being delivered through not just the allocation of $9 million in the 2017–18 budget but also the $530 million that has been allocated to the improvement of the Gippsland line as part of asset recycling funding which Victoria has now received.
This is really sensational intergenerational work and improvement for a line that has been neglected for a very long period of time. However, this line, as many of us from the area know and have firsthand experience of, is beset by age and by outdated infrastructure, which we are working on, but it is causing a knock on effect as trains get to the Pakenham interchange when and as people are required to move into the city on board metropolitan trains for commuting purposes. That, coupled with signal changes, coupled with delays and disruptions which occur across every part of the network, has had a disproportionately severe impact on a number of commuters from the Gippsland area in relation to the reliability of the service that is currently provided.
The action that I seek from the minister is that she make sure that reliability and information is provided wherever possible in real time and that information about the work being undertaken to improve the Gippsland line services and to improve interconnectivity is made available to the community so that we can in fact not just restore faith in the line around future improvements but have a better understanding about the work being undertaken to address delays, cancellations, disruptions and bus replacements as they have occurred across the network.
It is a very frustrating occasion when there are changes to a travel schedule, particularly when people are travelling to appointments down in Melbourne, medical appointments in particular, as well as to university and work. To that end, this information and the request that I have made for that to be provided on an ongoing basis by the minister and by Public Transport Victoria and V/Line would be of great benefit to commuters to provide greater public confidence as well as, wherever possible, information on the interface between V/Line and Metro Trains in the context of the delivery of services once they hit the metropolitan network.