Darwin is the first state in Australia to introduce a rail service that will allow commuters to use public transport, a key demand for the region’s ageing infrastructure.
Key points:A railway will run to the city from its base in Sydney’s CBD and will be accessible by public transport in most places in the stateThe rail service will run from the CBD to the CBD and then back to the station in the city’s north-westThe service will have a peak time of 10:30am, and an hourly capacity of about 150 to 250 commutersPassengers will pay $40 for the train to the central business district, a new daily charge that will be introduced next monthThe railway service will be available in the CBD from the time the train arrives in the centre of the city until the time it departs.
Passengers who use the train will be able to access it by public transit, such as the train line, tram or bus.
The railway will be operated by the company that operates Sydney’s train system, Trainline, with an additional train to join the service every 10 minutes.
The train will also have a capacity of 150 to 240 commuters.
Trainline operates the Sydney to Darwin train and the Brisbane to Adelaide train.
The project is part of a broader $8 billion plan to build new passenger rail lines and increase capacity on existing ones.
The project is also aimed at reducing the amount of traffic in the region.
More than 2.5 million passengers travelled on the train service between April and December last year, compared with 2.3 million for the same period last year.
The Government hopes the new rail service, which is expected to start in 2019, will help ease overcrowded Sydney’s trains.
A spokesman for the Regional Rail Corporation (RRRC), which runs the train services, said the new service would increase capacity by about 60 per cent and cut wait times in some stations by an average of 15 minutes.
The RRRC is also providing a new hourly peak-hour fare of $40.
Rail travel is also expected to improve in the longer term, as people become more comfortable using public transport.
“We believe this service will help to improve regional rail service reliability, improve efficiency and cut travel times,” the spokesman said.
Last year, the Queensland Government announced it was increasing its share of the new train service from 8 per cent to 14 per cent of the fare.