New services have been delivered to passengers in Melbourne's outer western suburbs, Bacchus Marsh, Ballan and Ballarat after the completion of the Ballarat Line Upgrade.
More than three years and 1.6 million working hours in the making, the full benefits of the project are now being realised by passengers on the Ballarat Line, including the introduction of 125 new weekly services as part of a new timetable that started Sunday 31 January.
Passengers on the Ballarat Line are now enjoying trains every 20 minutes during the peak, and every 40 minutes between peaks, providing more options for when and where local communities catch the train.
More services along the Ballarat Line include:
- the new Cobblebank Station and rebuilt Rockbank Station have 225 and 210 extra services respectively stopping at these locations each week, along with more than 200 extra services at Deer Park Station
- an extra 100 new weekly services for passengers to and from Ballarat Station
- the upgraded Ballan Station sees 100 new services available for passengers each week, with 110 new services for Wendouree
- Melton Station passengers can access an extra 140 weekly services stopping at the station, and Caroline Springs 125 new services
- Bacchus Marsh passengers have 25 new services to choose from, with all trains from Ballarat now stopping at the station, which will provide more express services between Bacchus Marsh and Southern Cross Station
- a fifth weekday service to Ararat following upgrades to the train stabling facilities as part of Regional Rail Revival.
Crews worked around the clock during the final phase of works on the project for five weeks prior, commissioning the new infrastructure built as part of the Ballarat Line Upgrade, to prepare Victoria’s second busiest regional rail line for the introduction of the new services.
Critical safety testing and driver training formed part of the works, to ensure all equipment was safe to operate and the upgrades were ready for trains to use. Train drivers were trained on the new track, signalling system and infrastructure, before services returned to the Ballarat Line.
Trains and passengers are now using the new second platforms at Ballan, Bacchus Marsh and Wendouree stations, and the accessible pedestrian overpass at Wendouree Station has been officially opened.
New passing loops at Ballan and Millbrook are in operation after the Bungaree passing loop was decommissioned and will help services recover faster from unexpected delays and improve reliability by providing more options for trains to pass each other on the line.
Rail Projects Victoria thanks the local communities and passengers in the region for their patience while we carried out work to transform the Ballarat Line.
View the new Ballarat Line timetable on the Public Transport Victoria website.
The Ballarat Line Upgrade is part of the Australian and Victorian governments’ investment of more than $4 billion in the Regional Rail Revival program, which is upgrading every regional passenger rail line in Victoria and creating 3,000 jobs and local supplier opportunities.