A fast rail line from Gold Coast to Brisbane has been given the thumbs up by the Prime Minister.
Scott Morrison has committed $8 million to fund a business case today for the project, that will see a 32 minute commute to Brisbane for Gold Coasters.
The plan will also look at a track down to the Gold Coast Airport.
The current travel time into Brisbane on the existing rail takes 74 minutes with the train travelling at around 69 kilometres an hour.
If the fast rail line goes ahead, the speed would more than double to 160 kilometres an hour.
The line will be part of a congestion busting plan, which is believed to be among five funded rail projects across the country, aiming to better connect capital cities to regional areas.
The Federal Member for McPherson, Karen Andrews, is elated with the announcement.
“It’s great news for motorists who are stuck on the M1 particularly those heading north on the Gold Coast through to Brisbane.
“This has been a long time coming but work is now underway,” Ms Andrews said.
While an exact timeline hasn’t been established yet, The Minister for Industry, Science and Technology is confident the plans will stick.
“The money is already committed so it will be in the budget.”
“The Liberal National Government is hitting the button right now to get the business case started.”
“The money is there. We’re ready to go,” Ms Andrews said.
The Gold Coast based MP says she more than understands how desperately this project is needed.
“As a local MP here on the Coast I have worked hard on this for a number of years.
“Just the other day I was driving up to Brisbane and it was two hours from Varsity through to the CBD and that’s just not good enough.
“We need to get people off the M1 and on to rail and fast rail will reduce the time that it takes to commute from the Gold Coast to Brisbane.
“It’s going to be an absolute game changer,” Ms Andrews said.
Deputy Mayor Donna Gates says the announcement is great news for the Gold Coast, but hopes that the construction process will be as quick as possible.
“We’d love to see the business case fast tracked as well as the trains.
“It’s a great thing for this city that we’re being recognised.
“There’s one in seven Australian voters live in the South-East Queensland Quarter.
“We need to be taken seriously, we have terrible congestion, our trains are at capacity, people are standing up.
“It’s time we had some better public transport,” Ms Gates said.