Sydney Trains timetable designed to favour case for Sydney Metro

The Bankstown Circle (also known as the Bankstown Circuit or Bankstown Loop) and Inner West Line until the October 2013 timetable change

Bankstown Circle trains have historically operated from the City Circle (via Museum) – Sydenham – Bankstown – Regents Park – Lidcombe – Strathfield – City Circle (via Town Hall)

The Regents Park/Lidcombe – City Circle section operated under the name of the Inner West Line

A new timetable released in October 2013 broke the Bankstown Circle with the Inner West Line terminating at Homebush and the Bankstown Line terminating at Lidcombe

October 2013: T2 Inner West Line cut at Homebush and T3 Bankstown Line cut at Lidcombe

The Bankstown Line’s termination at Lidcombe was in preparation for the conversion of the line (Sydenham to Lidcombe and  Cabramatta) into rapid transit (Metro) trains, although the government eventually announced Metro Southwest as only Sydenham to Bankstown (and a new corridor to Liverpool) due to conflicts with freight trains west of Birrong

T3 Bankstown Line services were also changed in 2013 to enter the City Circle via Town Hall (rather than via Museum), which increased overcrowding at Town Hall and Wynyard

Overcrowding at Town Hall and Wynyard stations has been attributed as a reason for a Metro line with the removal of the Bankstown Line from the City Circle

Sydney’s Rail Future announced by the NSW Government in June 2012 with Bankstown Line running Rapid Transit (Sydney Metro) trains

The Inner West Line’s termination at Homebush was in preparation for the conversion of the line (Central to Homebush) into rapid transit (Metro) trains, although this plan has since been ruled out

The 2013 timetable was designed to prepare the case for the introduction of Rapid Transit (Metro) trains into Sydney, instead of improving commuter journeys and reducing travel times

As the Sydney Metro City & Southwest project’s State Significant Infrastructure Application Report (February 2017) confirms, options including the conversion of the Inner West Line into Metro was considered



Reintroduction of services changed or cut by the Government and Transport for NSW (TfNSW) to reduce the necessity to change trains to reach destinations:

  • Reintroduction of the Bankstown Circle trains: it is ridiculous to terminate trains at Lidcombe and Homebush forcing people travelling from the Bankstown line stations to reach stations between Lidcombe and Strathfield Burwood etc to change trains at Lidcombe.

Not only do they have to change trains, but they have to change platforms to continue their journey. Obviously, rather than increasing their journey times by 15-20 minutes or more, many people switch to driving cars, adding to congestion and pollution.

The time taken to terminate trains at two stations (with only Flemington between) actually would require additional trains to provide the same frequency. The trains still have to operate around the City Circle, so no improvements to services are obtainable through the City!

This map shows the former Inner West Line’s route until 2013 which was an essential part of the Bankstown Circle and the Liverpool via Regents Park train service
  • Restore train services to Liverpool via Regents Park (former Inner West Line). When currently travelling on the (former) Inner West Line it requires 2 changes of trains (Lidcombe and Birrong) to reach Sefton, Chester Hill, Leightonfield, Villawood, Carramar, Cabramatta, Warwick Farm and Liverpool. The latter 3 can be reached if you travel via Granville, which is a longer route.

Once again, this ridiculous situation makes it inconvenient for people to use rail to reach their destinations and many, no doubt, end up driving and adding to the congestion and pollution.