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DESIGN & STYLE

Sydney Is Set to Score $900 Million Worth of New Air-Conditioned Trains Next Year

41 new trains will replace some of the network's oldest (and sweatiest) models.
By Libby Curran
February 07, 2019
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Sydney Is Set to Score $900 Million Worth of New Air-Conditioned Trains Next Year

41 new trains will replace some of the network's oldest (and sweatiest) models.
By Libby Curran
February 07, 2019
  shares

Sydneysiders will soon farewell some of its oldest commuter trains, with the NSW Government revealing it's set to fast-track the delivery of 17 additional air-conditioned models for use on our busy rail network.

The Waratah Series 2 trains will beef up an existing order of 24 vehicles, some of which were rolled out onto the tracks last September. You might have spied them cruising around with their bright orange driver cabins.

According to the Sydney Morning Herald, the new haul of trains won't come cheap, clocking in at around $900 million, taking into account ongoing maintenance. Most of that money won't be headed to local pockets, either, with the vehicles being built over in China — though upkeep will take place in Auburn, NSW.

Once rolled out, the full collection of Series 2 models should make for more pleasant journeys across Sydney's rail network, as they eventually replace the remaining S-Set trains — a group of 40-year-old carriages nicknamed 'sweat sets' for their lack of air-conditioning. By comparison, these newer counterparts boast double decker carriages, HD information screens, priority seating, wheelchair spaces, hearing aid loops and full air-conditioning with temperature control.

A 40-year-old S-Set train.

As well as the dire need to replace the old sweatboxes, the new trains are being fast tracked because of a boom in demand. Sydney's rail network has had a serious workout of late — it clocked 413 million journeys last year, a 38 percent increase from 2013. As to which lines the new trains will be landing on, Transport for NSW has said it will be prioritising T2 Inner West and Leppington, T3 Bankstown and T8 Airport and South Lines.

The latest orders should hit the tracks from 2020, which is unfortunately a little too late to save you from this summer's sweaty commutes. But, when they do drop, the additional trains will also mean more trains on the tracks and — hopefully — less time waiting at the station.

All 41 Waratah Series 2 trains are expected to hit the tracks by mid-2020.

Published on February 07, 2019 by Libby Curran

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