Media Statements | 30 July 2020

The transformational METRONET Forrestfield-Airport Link project has reached another major milestone, with tracklaying in the eight-kilometre tunnels now underway.

  • One kilometre of track for Forrestfield-Airport Link project now in place
  • Heralds new stage of works and an important step towards completion of the project
  • 2,400 tonnes of Australian-manufactured steel to be used to build the track
  • Tracklaying and rail infrastructure works to support more than 100 additional jobs
  • Seven METRONET projects underway in 2020, supporting jobs and local businesses   

The first kilometre of track for the $1.86 billion METRONET project has been laid near Redcliffe Station, following the final breakthrough near Bayswater and completion of tunnelling in April.

Australian company Martinus Rail - under contract to Salini Impregilo-NRW Joint Venture - will use more than 2,400 tonnes of Australian-manufactured steel in the tracklaying process, with around 40 kilometres of rail needed to form the track in each tunnel, tie-ins at Bayswater and stowage at High Wycombe.

The rail started out as 27.5 metre pieces of steel before being flash-butt welded into giant 220 metre strings. Multiple teams work simultaneously to weld lengths of rail, transport and precisely lay the rail and sleepers to form the skeleton track in the tunnels, then pour the concrete that finishes the slab track.

Work is also underway to prepare for the installation of the overhead line equipment and the complex systems for communications and signalling. The tracklaying and rail infrastructure processes will support more than 100 jobs.

The Forrestfield-Airport Link will be named the Airport Line when it becomes operational, and will provide a 20 minutes' rail link between the Perth central business district and the eastern suburbs, with new stations at Redcliffe, Airport Central and High Wycombe.  

Trains are scheduled to start running on the Airport Line in late 2021.


Comments attributed to Premier Mark McGowan:

"This year alone we have seven METRONET projects underway, providing a much needed boost for our local economy as we recover from the COVID-19 pandemic.

"Tracklaying is one of the final major events on the construction of a rail line - it's an exciting milestone for this $1.86 billion project, with more than 2,400 tonnes of Australian-made steel being prepared.

"This project continues to provide opportunities for local businesses, with WA company Melchor recently announced as the builder of the multistorey car park at High Wycombe Station."


Comments attributed to Transport Minister Rita Saffioti:

"We're at an exciting time for this major infrastructure project - the tunnel-boring machines have finished creating our tunnels, our three new stations are taking shape and tracklaying is now underway.  

"More than 2,400 tonnes of steel will soon become the new rail line that will carry thousands of people each day between the CBD, our airport and the south-eastern suburbs.

"The project has achieved several milestones already this year and, together with other METRONET projects, will play a significant role in WA's COVID-19 economic recovery."


Media line: (08) 9326 2526 or

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