The first stage of Australia’s first driverless metro train line, Sydney Metro, has officially opened $1 billion under budget.
The North West Metro is a fully accessible railway, with trains operating every four minutes in each direction during peak times and the ability to increase this to every two minutes in future.
Platform screen doors have been installed on each of the 13 stations to ensure people and objects are kept away from the tracks.
Premier Gladys Berejiklian said the opening was a truly historic day for New South Wales.
“I am so excited that our hard work and discipline has paid off with this rail line opening on time and more than $1 billion under budget,” Berejiklian said.
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“More than 22,000 people have worked on this important project since 2011 and I want to thank each of them for helping to connect Sydney’s North West like never before.”
NSW Transport Minister Andrew Constance said the project will leave a lasting legacy which will be felt for generations to come.
“Sydney Metro will forever change how we get around Sydney,” Constance said.
“It is a transformational public transport investment on par with the Sydney Harbour Bridge a century ago.”
John Holland CEO Joe Barr said the company was proud to have helped make Australia’s first driverless metro a reality.
“More than a thousand men and women from John Holland worked on this city-shaping project. Sydney Metro is a testament to their imagination, their determination and their hard work,” Barr said.
“John Holland people built the tunnels, laid the track, built the stations, and prepared the railway for carrying passengers. Our gratitude goes out to them and their families.
“The start of Sydney Metro services will bring communities in Sydney closer together and transform the way we move around Australia’s largest city.”
John Holland is also building the tunnels under Sydney Harbour for Sydney Metro City and Southwest as well as upgrading Sydenham Station and Junction.
The Metro line is being expanded from Chatswood to Bankstown and by 2024 Sydney will have 31 metro stations and a 66 kilometres standalone metro railway.