Rail link will ‘divide’ Sunshine

Tara Murray

The proposed concept plans for the Melbourne Airport Rail Link will drive a “lethal stake through the heart of Sunshine,” according to a local advocacy group

The Greater Sunshine Community Alliance’s convener Stephen Torsi said the group was concerned by the plans which were released last month by the state and federal governments.

The plans include a new bridge over the Maribyrnong River and elevated twin tracks between Sunshine and the Albion Junction.

There was no mention in of the Sunshine Super Transport Hub in the plans.

Mr Torsi said community members were concerned by the information that had been released so far.

He said the alliance was concerned about two issues in particular: the omission of the Sunshine Super Transport Hub and the skyrail between Sunshine and Albion Junction.

As reported by Star Weekly, Brimbank council has raised also concerns that the hub has been overlooked.

“The fact that it looks like the superb hub has been downgraded is a massive blow as a community,” he said.

“We’re keen to work with developers and all the stakeholders and push back on something that looks like it will be second rate.

“We want to make sure we get the best for Sunshine, we don’t want just another track that divides the city.”

Mr Torsi said the proposed elevated tracks from Sunshine to Albion Junction would split Sunshine.

“They split Sunshine in two in the 60s due to bad planning and this goes further in splitting the city,” he said.

“It drives a lethal stake through the heart of Sunshine. We will fight hard on this, Imagine the uproar if this was Toorak.

Sunshine Business Association president Vu Du is another who is concerned about the future of the super hub.

He said after a tough 12 months for a lot of businesses, the local community was in need of some good news.

“We’re not pleased [with the plans],” he said.

“There are massive developments and people are looking to build businesses in Sunshine.

“People are relying on [the super hub] to come to fruition.”

“The two shopping centres don’t draw big retailers and something like this would draw larger retailers, which would attract more people to the area.”

A state government spokesperson said it was making unprecedented investments in Sunshine.

“We’re delivering more than $20 billion in transport infrastructure projects that benefit Sunshine, making it one of the most important transport interchanges in Victoria – so we’re continuing to look at the wider transport precinct at Sunshine, and we’ll have more to say soon about this thriving centre in Melbourne’s growing west, and how the community can have their say on the project as it progresses.”