The Albanese and Victorian government have clashed over funding of Melbourne’s Suburban Rail Loop project with more federal funds needed to start construction.
Prime Minister Anthony Albanese pledged $2.2 billion before this month’s federal election – but it’s well short of the $11.5 billion the Andrews government wants to build the loop’s first eastern leg.
The first stage between Cheltenham and Box Hill is set to open at 2035 and cost between $30 billion and $34.5 billion.
The funding is also complicated by federal Labor’s pre-election pledge to restore Infrastructure Australia – which was established in 2008 to guide spending decisions.
The project would need a positive assessment for further federal funding commitments.