Bankstown Line to be cut at Cabramatta?

The T3 Bankstown Line currently provides passenger train services from City to Bankstown then onward directly to Lidcombe (via Regents Park) or Livepool (via Cabramatta).  Bankstown Line trains then merge with the Leppington Line and Cumberland Line at Cabramatta.

The Sydenham to Bankstown section of the Bankstown line is being converted for the Sydney Metro Southwest with construction beginning in 2018. Stations west of Bankstown such as Berala to Carramar, Yagoona and Birrong are not receiving the Sydney Metro. Commuters travelling from these stations to/from the City will have to make an interchange at Lidcombe or Bankstown and potentially at Birrong as well.

In 2012, the NSW Transport Master Plan was released including a map of the Bankstown Line to Cabramatta being converted to Sydney Metro (rapid transit). However only the Sydenham to Bankstown section will be converted to Sydney Metro Southwest as of 2017.

NSW Transport Masterplan

With the Sydney Metro Southwest removing all direct City trains for Berala to Carramar, Yagoona and Birrong; Sydney Trains has yet to announce the stopping patterns for Bankstown Line trains west of Bankstown. Reports of a Lidcombe to Cabramatta (via Regents Park) shuttle service or light rail have not been officially confirmed.

T3 west of Bankstown once Metro opens in 2024

The Sydney Morning Herald reported in 2015 that “Transport for NSW is considering a number of options for customers between Bankstown and Lidcombe and Cabramatta after the introduction of Sydney Rapid Transit…

This is an indication that services from the Bankstown Line to Cabramatta will be separate to services beyond Cabramatta.

Sydney Morning Herald

In 2016, Transport for NSW published on the Sydney Metro website that it would operate the Bankstown Line between Cabramatta, Lidcombe and Bankstown. After this was reported in the media sparking a commuter backlash, this statement was eventually removed in May 2017 from the Sydney Metro website.

Sydney Metro (archived version)

In February 2017, a Sydney Metro Southwest project update included a map showing that the Bankstown Line would operate to Cabramatta not Liverpool. Transport for NSW claimed this was a typographic error but did not release an amended copy of the document. The Sydney Metro website until May 2017 also remained unchanged with the statement that the Bankstown Line would operate between Cabramatta, Lidcombe and Bankstown.

Sydney Metro

In June 2018, as part of the ‘More Trains, More Services’ announcement a network diagram was released appearing to show the Bankstown Line appearing to end at Cabramatta. The line does not curve towards Liverpool as opposed to the T4 Illawarra line curving near Sutherland for trains to Cronulla.

More Trains, More Services

Transport for NSW provided a statement after the 2018 June ‘More Trains, More Services’ announcement claiming that this map is for illustrative purposes and not the network map. The statement also notes that T3 Bankstown Line trains will be running services between Liverpool, Lidcombe and the City Circle.

Clarification has been sought regarding the operation of T3 Bankstown Line to the City Circle, given that the Sydenham to Bankstown Metro connects to the City to Chatswood Metro line.

T3 Bankstown Line between Lidcombe, Bankstown, Cabramatta with partial bus in the 2030s with Sydney Metro Southwest extended to Liverpool via new stations likely around Bankstown Airport and Chipping Norton. Source: Transport for NSW and NSW Cabinet In Confidence documents

Government documents obtained by Restore Inner West Line show the T3 Bankstown Line operating in the 2030s between Cabramatta, Lidcombe and Bankstown. Buses will also replace all trains at most stations between Cabramatta and Bankstown except Sefton (interchange for Regents Park branch).

Leightonfield, Villawood, Carramar stations will be shutdown due to predicted low patronage levels. The Sydney Metro Southwest extension from Bankstown to Liverpool will not run through the existing rail corridor.