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57 minutes to Sydney... and less than a decade away

Canberra Airport will today unveil plans for a $140 million high speed rail (HSR) facility to be constructed adjacent to the new airport terminal.

“We have long been advocates of a high speed rail link between Canberra and Sydney, and that reality is getting closer with strong support from NSW Premier Barry O’Farrell and the ongoing stalemate over

where to build Sydney’s second airport,” Canberra Airport Managing Director, Stephen Byron said.

“Today Canberra Airport is proud to present plans for a superb, multi-modal, transport facility to underline the high speed rail’s integration into Canberra Airport, in accordance with Premier O’Farrell’s vision.

“This terminal will provide a seamless interface for passengers arriving in Canberra by air ready for their 57minute train trip to Sydney.

“The facility will cost $140 million (in 2012 dollars) and take two years to build.

“Canberra Airport is today committing to funding the HSR terminal project and will be in a position to consider a start date once the timetable for the HSR is confirmed.”

Mr Byron said Stage Two of the Commonwealth Government’s HSR study was due to be completed by the end of this year, including finalising recommendations for the route.

“We know that Sydney Airport and its surrounding transport infrastructure are already facing capacity

issues, and that the Joint Study into Aviation Capacity for the Sydney Region advised that passenger demand in the region (including Canberra and Newcastle) will increase from the 2010 level of 40 million to 58 million in 2020 and 88 million by 2035.

“We also know from Stage One of the HSR study that patronage demand for regional fast train services to

and from Canberra will be 11 million in 2036, that the cost per trip between Canberra and Sydney will be

around $40 for non-business and $95 for business. The Infrastructure Partners Australia (IPA) report tells us the trip from Canberra to Sydney will take 57 minutes.

“The high speed rail will be a significant, nation-building project with substantial benefits to the Australian

economy, from jobs during construction and for the local steel industry, to international tourism, as well as relieving the congestion endured by Sydneysiders as the population grows to six million in 2036.

“The HSR from Canberra to Sydney should be delivered by 2020, with the terminal at Canberra Airport constructed over the last two years of that period.”

Mr Byron said with the completion of this project, Canberra Airport would become a multi-modal hub for high speed rail, domestic and international airlines, regional and local buses and onsite car parking.

“Passengers will be able to transfer from arriving aircraft to their train in under five minutes without baggage and be in Sydney in less than an hour,” Mr Byron said.