Just a day after announcing it will fully fund the Metro Tunnel rail project, the Victorian government has put the project out to market, with Expressions of Interest now being sought.

The Public-Private Partnership, expected to be worth around $6 billion, will deliver nine-kilometre twin tunnels under the CBD and five new underground stations.

Sixty five new, high capacity trains will run on the line in order to reduce network load.

Early works are set to begin next year, with the major construction expected to start in 2018. The project set to create 3700 jobs in Victoria.

““This is the biggest public transport project in Australia, we want the best in the world to build it, and we’re getting it done,” acting premier James Merlino said.

Public transport minister Jacinta Allan said: “Melbourne is growing, but we can’t run more trains because the City Loop is full. The Metro Tunnel will free up space in the Loop to run more trains in and out of the city.

“We’re looking to partner with the world’s best to build the back-bone of a better train system for Melbourne – the Metro Tunnels and five new stations.”

The EOI process closes at 2:00pm on Thursday 9 June.

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