The NSW government has shown a serious commitment to improving public transport in the state, but problems in the implementation of some major projects are undermining its credibility.
While the Coalition spent heavily on transportation projects, such as the $17 billion WestConnex highway in the first few years after he took office in 2011, it has refocused the transportation budget on rail and light rail using privatization procedures. Of electricity.
The Sydney CBD and South East Light Rail and Northwest Metro, which opened in 2019, had some problems along the way, but they transformed Sydney. The City and Southwest metro line, due for completion in 2024, and the Metro West line, between CBD and Parramatta, should be just as important.
Despite those achievements, the Coalition is under fire for its record on public transport, especially due to problems in the acquisition of its main projects. The last Herald The Resolve Political Monitor poll says the opposition outperforms the Coalition on the issue.
As the Herald reports today, for example, that Transport NSW officials have been holding urgent talks with Spanish manufacturer CAF over a $2.6 billion contract for new regional passenger trains, which is now expected to face long delays.
The government has faced criticism over the suitability and safety of three new Emerald-class catamaran harbor ferries. Two years ago, it was discovered that 10 new River-class ferries would not fit under the bridges over the Parramatta River.
The government is not entirely to blame for its biggest transportation headache: the dispute with the Rail Tram and Bus Union, which has lasted for 18 months, hitting commuters with strikes and service disruptions.
The government and the union are fighting over wages and what the union says are safety issues with the new Korean-built intercity trains for lines from Sydney to Newcastle, the South Coast and the Blue Mountains.
These claims should be taken with a grain of salt.