The business community plays an important role in generating and supporting economic prosperity for Melbourne and Victoria. This role will only grow in significance as our population increases, with central Melbourne projected to become Australia’s largest business centre with almost 900,000 jobs by 2051.

The Metro Tunnel Project will support this growth, with more frequent and reliable train services making it easier to travel to the CBD and move around the city for business, shopping, tourism and events.

The project will also stimulate urban renewal in inner city areas such as Arden and provide rail access for the first time to Parkville and St Kilda Road to create opportunities for new commercial development, jobs and housing close to the city centre.

As with any major infrastructure project in a large, busy city like Melbourne there will be some disruption to day to day operations in and around Metro Tunnel construction sites.

The level of disruption to business activity will vary depending on the location of the business, the type of construction activity and duration of works.

Managing potential impacts to businesses during construction

Safeguards are in place to reduce and manage the Metro Tunnel’s construction impacts on businesses and the community.

These Environmental Performance Requirements (EPRs) have been approved by the Minister for Planning and define outcomes that must be achieved during the design, construction and operation of the project.

They include:

  • business continuity plans outlining how contractors will manage impacts and provide support
  • timely and regular communications with businesses including works notifications
  • maintaining access to businesses for customers, vehicles and deliveries
  • managing noise, dust, vibration and overall business amenity
  • providing a range of support measures in line with the Business Support Guidelines for Construction.

Details of the EPRs are available in the Metro Tunnel Environmental Management Framework.

Guidelines for business support

Rail Projects Victoria (RPV) has created the Business Support Guidelines for Construction (PDF, 204.8 KB) to help businesses continue to operate while we build the Metro Tunnel.

The guidelines, approved by the Minister for Planning, outline the proactive measures and support services that RPV and its construction contractors offer during construction.

Types of business support include:

  • promoting individual businesses and precincts though various channels
  • activation opportunities such as tailored events, leveraging existing events and pop-ups
  • partnerships with key stakeholders and organisations such as local councils, tourism organisations and business precinct associations
  • opportunities for businesses including engagement of specialists and one-on-one advice to businesses
  • developing Business Plans to assist businesses and the contractor to further understand how to best support businesses during construction.

How will I know if I am eligible for business support?

Eligibility for business support will be determined by Metro Tunnel contractors, based on the proximity to construction and the program of construction as it progresses. Eligible businesses include:

  • Directly impacted businesses in close proximity to construction
  • Other businesses within the designated project area that may be impacted by construction
  • Businesses within an eligibility zone as identified by the contractor/s, based on their construction program
  • Businesses outside the above criteria that can provide evidence that Metro Tunnel construction activities have negatively impacted their operations.

Our contractor/s will notify and engage with businesses that are eligible for support.

What if I am not satisfied with the level of support I am receiving?

Every endeavour will be made to work with businesses to understand their specific requirements and provide appropriate support measures. This includes developing a Business Plan, if required, to achieve a deeper understanding of how a business operates so that tailored measures can be implemented.

If a business is not satisfied with the support measures provided, there are options available to businesses to resolve the matter:

1. Providing feedback or registering a complaint to Metro Tunnel contractors

Members of the business community can provide feedback or register a complaint to the Metro Tunnel appointed contractors via the following channels:

Contractors will liaise directly with the business to seek resolution of complaints received.

2. Contacting RPV's Business Support team

RPV’s Business Support team oversees engagement with businesses impacted by the Metro Tunnel Project and ensures our contractors are supporting them in line with our guidelines.

The Business Support team can be contacted via:

In the first instance, the Business Support team will liaise with the business and the contractor to resolve matters. Further information on our complaints handling process is available.

3. Engaging the Victorian Small Business Commissioner

The Victorian Small Business Commissioner (VSBC) can provide an independent mediation service if a business is not satisfied with the level of support provided by the appointed contractor or RPV. The VSBC will, where appropriate, facilitate dispute resolution between the business and the appointed contractor and / or RPV.

Businesses can contact the VSBC via:

Keeping you informed

We are committed to keeping businesses and the community informed about Metro Tunnel works and impacts. Our construction contractors will notify businesses in advance of construction work and aim to minimise disruption wherever possible. This includes:

  • Works notifications by mail and email
  • Face to face briefings
  • Direct contact via phone and email
  • Group presentations such as business breakfasts and briefings
  • Case management support.

How the Metro Tunnel Project will benefit business

The Metro Tunnel Project will create significant longterm opportunities for businesses and communities across Melbourne and Victoria.

It will change the way people move around Melbourne with ‘turn up and go’ rail services and improved access to key business precincts, retail and hospitality destinations, event venues and tourist attractions.

It will also enable businesses to reach new customers and markets, develop new products and services and benefit from the greater connectivity of a metro-style rail network.