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Case Study

Regional Rail Network Development Plan

Train trakcs

The Victorian Government released the Regional Network Development Plan - in May 2016, outlining the blueprint for regional rail and coach services to support the economic and social development of regional Victoria. They required a business case to determine an investment strategy that best delivered the social, planning and economic benefits espoused in the policy.

The situation

The Victorian Government released its regional public transport policy - the Regional Network Development Plan (RNDP) - in May 2016, outlining the blueprint for regional rail and coach services to support the economic and social development of regional Victoria.

This implies a range of short, medium and long-term investments in upgrades and maintenance of the rail network and regional rolling stock. The RNDP business case therefore needed to determine a whole-of-portfolio investment strategy that best delivered the social, planning and economic benefits espoused in the policy.

Our approach

Initially Advisian was appointed to help Transport for Victoria prepare a social and economic assessment framework to inform a prioritised development plan for the regional rail network, allowing for incremental improvements in train services to regional towns and cities. This required a high-level assessment of rail upgrades that would deliver tangible service improvements.

With the development of the rail network forming one part of a much larger array of regional initiatives, this work highlighted the need to take a more sophisticated approach to regional transport planning to ensure its outcomes were linked to the Government’s policy goals, including:

  • Regional economic and social development
  • Managing the ongoing rapid population growth in outer Melbourne.

The result was a plan that expanded focus from infrastructure upgrades to include rail services improvements, the experience of passengers, and transport’s role in supporting not only economic development, but also community aspirations and the ongoing growth of regional cities.

Advisian also prepared an overarching narrative that brought together the State’s multiple related investments in the maintenance and development of the regional public transport network. This narrative resonated at executive level and proved pivotal in improving understanding of the program.

The role drew on Advisian’s unique blend of skills across strategic transport and land use planning, social and economic assessment and business case development.

The business case helped resolve overlaps and clarify the interdependencies of outer suburban growth area electrifications, next generation rolling stock specifications and maintenance, upgrade and development of the regional network.

Results

Advisian’s narrative and framework framed multiple business cases being prepared across the portfolio under RNDP.

It helped resolve overlaps and clarify the interdependencies of outer suburban growth area electrifications, next generation rolling stock specifications and maintenance, upgrade and development of the regional network.

The Victorian and Australian governments have committed significant funding to the plan.

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