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Hunter Business Chamber welcomes express train initiative, but says more needs to be done

Release Date: 28/09/2017
The region’s largest business representative group today applauded the NSW Government’s announcement about a new express train service, which is expected to save almost half an hour on both the trip to Sydney and the return to Newcastle.
Chamber CEO Bob Hawes said NSW Transport Minister Andrew Constance’s message about the time saving trial is good news for businesses and people in the Hunter.
However, the Chamber believes that more needs to be done to improve transportation links between the state’s biggest city and largest region.
“The Chamber has been working on a strategy to indenture better travel times to and from Sydney for some time now. The strategy has the aim of separating freight and passenger services, and will also reduce passenger train travel times. If travel times are reduced, benefits and efficiencies will flow on to our entire community.
“The Hunter Business Chamber is also encouraging the NSW Government to submit a proposal to the Federal Government to secure funds for market testing and pre-feasibility for improvements between Newcastle and Hornsby, following the $20 million commitment to examine faster rail recently announced by Paul Fletcher, Federal Minister for Urban Infrastructure.
“The Federal Government is dangling a carrot in front of the NSW Government. A range of regional stakeholders in the Hunter and the Central Coast should be doing all they can to attract federal funds.
“Minister Constance noted in his announcement that the proposed trial will be limited to one service to Sydney in the morning and one returning to Newcastle in the afternoon.
“We are hopeful the proposed trial is embraced by the travelling public, which in turn may lead to the addition of more services that might broaden appeal of the trip,” Bob said.

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