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 New South Wales . Australia

Sydney CityRail Transit

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Sydney (approx. 5.3 million inhabitants), capital of the state of New South Wales and largest city in Australia.

In 2019, Sydney added its first metro line to its extensive suburban railway. It is also expanding its light rail network with urban tram lines after having closed its large street tramway network, one of the longest in the world at the time, in 1961.


 Sydney Metro
 North-West Line

Sydney Metro opened its first 36 km section in May 2019 to serve the outer north-western suburbs. The fully automated line runs from Chatswood to Tallawong with 13 stations using platform screen doors throughout. It is known as metro north-west, rather than by a line letter and number like the rest of Sydney’s transit system. It includes 28 km of tunnels, 15.5 km of which were new, as well as 12.5 km of existing tunnel which it took over from Sydney Train’s T1 commuter railway between Chatswood and Epping. The metro line has cross-platform interchange at Chatswood for the T1 line and via an underground concourse at Epping for the T9 line and regional intercity line to the Central Coast and Newcastle. It is operated by Hong Kong’s MTR, using 6-car Alstom single-deck trains based on the Metropolis model. Like Sydney’s suburban rail lines, it uses 1435 mm standard gauge and overhead 1500 volt DC electric traction.

26 May 2019: Chatswood - Tallawong (36 km)

City and South-West Metro (under construction)
A second phase of the city’s driverless metro began construction in 2018. The 30 km line will connect with the existing north-west line at Chatswood and run south to North Sydney, under Sydney Harbour, through Sydney’s city centre to Central then south to Bankstown. It will have 18 stations and offer direct connections with Sydney Trains’ lines at Martin Place, Central, Sydenham and Bankstown. It will incorporate Sydney Trains’ T3 line between Sydenham and Bankstown after converting it to driverless metro operation. It is scheduled to open in 2024.


Sydney Metro Sydney Metro Sydney Metro Sydney Metro

More Sydney Metro photos!

 Sydney Trains

Sydney Trains (formerly CityRail) is a frequent suburban train service which runs underground in the city centre as well as to the airport and to the eastern suburbs. Double-deck trains are used on all routes spreading out from the city centre as far as 60 km to Richmond or 56 km to MacArthur. Lines are bundled in the central area and offer a metro-like service with trains every few minutes during peak hours. A diversion of the East Hills Line via the Airport opened on 21 May 2000 in time for the Summer Olympic Games. As of 26 May 2019 (when the first metro line opened), Sydney Trains operates 383 km of lines in revenue service in the metropolitan area, 21 km of which is underground. It has 19 underground stations.

On 23 Feb 2009, the 12.5 km underground rail link between Epping and Chatswood in the northern suburbs was added to the network. It opened with three intermediate stations, initially as a shuttle service before being incorporated into T1 line operations. This sector was closed for seven months in 2018-2019 and converted to driverless single-deck operation on the metro north-west line (see above).

On 08 Feb 2015, the "South West Rail Link", as the project was known, started serving the new 8 km branch from Glenfield to Leppington with one intermediate station at Edmondson Park. Trains initially shuttled every 30 minutes between Leppington and Liverpool, skipping Casula station. Later the line was connected into the T2 South Line for frequent services to the Sydney city centre via Granville. In addition, the line was connected in 2017 to the T5 line for frequent services to the Parramatta city centre with Leppington becoming that line's southern terminus. [Project Website]

Recent additions to Sydney's rail network (using contemporary line numbers):

23-06-1979: T4 Erskineville - Bondi Junction
21-12-1987: T8 East Hills - Glenfield
05-11-1996: T5 Merrylands - Harris Park
08-03-1998: T7 Flemington Goods Junctions - Olympic Park (operates as a shuttle service between Lidcombe and Olympic Park. During major events trains run directly between Central and Olympic Park).
21-05-2000: T8 Central - Turrella via Airport
23-02-2009: T1 Epping - Chatswood (converted to M1 metro line on 26-05-2019)
08-02-2015: T2/T5 Glenfield - Leppington
[X] 05-01-2020: T6 Clyde - Carlingford out of service to be partially converted to light rail operation together with Parramatta Light Rail project


CityRail CityRail CityRail CityRail CityRail CityRail

 Light Rail / Tram

L1 Central – Dulwich Hill
Starting from Central Station, a modern tram line (known as Sydney Light Rail) runs via the Convention Centre and Darling Harbour to the inner western suburbs of Pyrmont, Glebe and Lilyfield (7.2 km). The largest part of the route re-uses an abandoned freight railway, which was connected to Central Station by 1.1 km of street running in dedicated lanes. The light rail line, later labelled L1, was extended to Dulwich Hill in 2014. Sydney Light Rail is operated by Transdev Australasia (TDA) with CAF Urbos 5-unit trams. It uses 1435mm standard gauge and overhead 750V DC electric traction.

11 Aug 1997: Central Station - Wentworth Park
13 Aug 2000: Wentworth Park - Lilyfield
27 Mar 2014: Lilyfield -Dulwich Hill (5.6 km)

L2 Circular Quay – Randwick &
L3 Circular Quay – Kingsford

Construction of 12 km of modern tram line from Circular Quay via the city centre to the south-eastern suburbs was launched in 2014. The two lines share tracks from the Circular Quay ferry terminal as far as Moore Park, running largely on road, separated from car traffic. The route includes a 350 m tunnel between Surry Hills and the Moore Park sports precinct. The tram uses Alstom Citadis X05s in coupled pairs, with Alstom’s third-rail ground traction system in operation between Town Hall and Circular Quay along George Street, which is the city’s main street. With the the Randwick branch in service since late 2019, the Kingsford branch followed in spring 2020. [Project Website].

14 Dec 2019: L2 Circular Quay - Randwick (8.6 km)
03 Apr 2020: L3 Moore Park - Juniors Kingsford (3.1 km)

L4 Westmead – Parramatta City Centre – Carlingford (Parramatta Light Rail) (under construction)
A modern tram system serving the western suburbs started construction in 2019. It will operate in dedicated lanes on-road from Westmead to the Parramatta city centre and Camellia. From there it will take over the Sydney Trains T6 line to Carlingford. It is expected to open in mid-2024. This service will be operated by CAF Urbos 7-section trams and will include a section of wire-free operation through the historic Parramatta centre. A second phase will incorporate a branch from Camellia to Sydney Olympic Park.

[Project Website]


Sydney Light Rail Sydney Light Rail Sydney Light Rail Sydney Light Rail Sydney Light Rail Sydney Light Rail

 Other Rail Projects

- Sydney Metro West: A second metro line, from the Sydney city centre to the Parramatta city centre, is currently being planned to relieve overcrowding on Sydney Trains’ T1 line. Construction scheduled to start before 2022. [Project Website]

- Funding has been announced for a new metro link to serve the new Western Sydney Airport which is under construction for completion by 2026. The line would connect with the T1 line at St Marys station.

- The existing metro north-west line is planned to be extended by 3.3 km from Tallawong to Schofields (on T1, T5) and then later on to St Marys (with T1 transfer).

- Also, the T2 line is planned to extend from Leppington towards the new Western Sydney airport’s Aerotropolis development.



Sydney Metro (Official Website)Urban Rail Down Under

NSW Public Transport > Trains | Light Rail

Sydney Airport Rail Link

Light Rail Extension Projects

Sydney Trains and Sydney Metro at Wikipedia

Matthew Geier's Sydney Light Rail Page

NSW Rail Transport Museum

Complete rail network map for Sydney CityRail

Sydney Tramway Museum

David Johnson's photo collection of NSW electric trains

Read your webmaster's personal impressions of the Sydney CityRail system in the UrbanRail.Blog



 Sydney Monorail

In the city centre of Sydney, the Sydney Monorail, was an elevated circle line running only anti-clockwise, linking many points of touristic interest in the central business district and the Darling Harbour area. The 3.6 km monorail line started operations in 1988, but ceased to do so on 30 June 2013, before being dismantled.

Sydney Monorail Sydney Monorail




2007 © Robert Schwandl (UrbanRail.Net)