THE first of the Bellevue produced C-series railcars are expected to start operating in the next couple of weeks in a staged transition into operation as manufacturing continues for the remaining railcars.
The return of locally manufactured railcars follows testing last June, with more than 200 people being directly employed at the rail manufacturing facility.
With railcar manufacturing returning for the first time since 1994, half of the contract has been delivered from local content with more than 270 jobs created leading to a steady line of employment opportunities.
As the next generation of railcar, the C-series features six railcars, with three doors on each side of every railcar with a total of 246 railcars will be delivered to support new Metronet projects.
Manufactured at the purpose-built Bellevue Railcar Manufacturing and Maintenance Facility, the new C-series will see the retirement of the older A-series and will travel along the Mandurah-Joondalup lines.
With a 35-year service life, the C-series will transport Western Australians for years to come.
Transport Minister Rita Saffioti said more than a dozen local businesses have also gained work, manufacturing key components, including fuel tanks, pantographs and 400 passenger seats per rail car.
“It’s all helping to rebuild our capacity in the rail industry,” she said.
The C-series railcars will start servicing the Mandurah rail line in February, and the Yanchep extension that is due to open within months.
The new Bayswater train station and the Morley to Ellenbrook rail line are due to open by the end of this year, while the Byford rail extension that has closed the Armadale line, and the new Thornlie to Cockburn link will not be finished before March 2025.