State reserves rail corridor

PENRITH Council has welcomed the state government's moves to reserve a rail corridor that will allow the South West Rail Link to join up with the Western Line at St Marys and provide a direct route to Badgerys Creek airport. Mayor Ross Fowler said the region needed north-south transport links across western Sydney.

"Considerable growth has occurred from Blacktown and the north-west through to the Macarthur area in the south-west, including Penrith," Cr Fowler said.

"More growth is planned.

"Yet people have limited public transport options to move across the region.

"We are tireless in our efforts to increase the number and the diversity of local jobs.

"Our community needs to be more able to access jobs in the region and a new rail line would greatly assist this.

"More rail access means less motor vehicle use and this must be better for the environment."

The council has also lodged its own submission on the proposed extension which includes a rail alignment through private properties in Orchard Hills and through the preserved Cumberland Plain woodland at Defence Establishment Orchard Hills.

Cr Fowler said the submission stated the rail corridor should minimise any potential adverse environmental, economic and social impacts, including any impacts on threatened species, populations or ecological communities on the Cumberland Plain.

The submission also includes additional stations at the Penrith Health and Education Precinct at Werrington and the proposed Sydney Science Park, connecting the Westernl Line through the precinct with a connection to the city centre, and increasing the frequency and speed of Western services, and synchronising services.

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