Thornlie-Cockburn Link

Thornlie-Cockburn Link


The Thornlie-Cockburn Link will be Perth’s first east-west cross line connection, making travel around the city by train more flexible and providing a higher level of public transport service to Perth’s southern suburbs.

Connecting the Mandurah and Armadale/Thornlie lines will open new opportunities for longer-term developments around the future Nicholson Road and Ranford Road stations.

The Thornlie-Cockburn Link will support growth and accessibility across the southern suburbs by providing direct access to employment, sporting and recreation opportunities at Canning Vale, Cannington Strategic Metropolitan Centre, Burswood Peninsula and the eastern Central Business District.  

In December 2019, the NEWest Alliance, with CPB Contractors and Downer Group, was formed to deliver the Thornlie-Cockburn Link.

Early works and detailed design are underway and with main construction work expected to start in mid-2020.

The Thornlie-Cockburn Link will support about 1,680 jobs. Any WA Government roles associated with the project are advertised on the WA Jobs Board. Project roles will be advertised through CPB Contractors and Downer Group.


The NEWest Alliance, made up of CPB Contractors, Downer Group and the Public Transport Authority is progressing the detailed design, planning and procurement stages ready for main construction, which is expected to start in mid-2020.

For more updates, read our Newsletter, sign-up to project updates or join the project Facebook group to stay in the loop on the latest project announcements.

Geotechnical Investigation

Geotechnical investigations will be taking place in and around the future Ranford Road Station Precinct and Rail Corridor. Works include taking soil samples, digging, drilling activity, large vehicles and equipment and some initial, minor clearing activity.

The site investigation work, including the potholing, geotechnical testing and associated traffic management will be ongoing until July 2020.


To protect road users, as well as our workforce carrying out site investigation work.

Roadworks will be ongoing during off-peak times, when traffic volumes are lower, as per the below.

  • From 9am until 3pm, Monday to Saturday
  • From 6pm until 5am, nightly (note an earlier start and Sunday night shifts from 10 May 2020)
Ranford Road, northbound and southbound lanes, from north of Bannister Road to south of Livingston Drive, Canning Vale 
Bannister Road, Clifton Road and Livingston Drive, Canning Vale
  • Lane closures and temporary speed reductions
Footpath along the eastern most section of Marginata Parkway, Canning Vale
  •  Partial closures (day shift only, unless otherwise notified)

Sevenoaks Street, between Beckenham Street and Sydenham Street, Beckenham and O’Dell Street, near the intersection with Lester Drive, Thornlie

  • For one day between 20 and 25 May 2020* there will be traffic management at the following location
  • Roadworks advisory signage and traffic cones in place, 7am until 7pm
Access to properties will be maintained. Please proceed with caution, adhere to the speed limit and take note of directional signage.

These works, including night shift, large equipment and vehicle movements throughout the area may be noticeable to nearby residents. In an initiative to provide a safer workplace, during this period we will be trialing a Sunday to Thursday night shift roster. This will avoid crews being on and near the road during Friday and Saturday nights which are traditionally busier and therefore pose a higher risk to the workforce. Every effort will be made to reduce construction noise and a local government-approved noise management plan will be in place.

If you have questions about the upcoming works get in touch with us. 


While the Thornlie-Cockburn Link is located in existing rail corridors, important environmental issues have, and will continue to be, considered.  

Flora management
The existing rail corridor has been largely cleared of native vegetation and is maintained as an active freight rail corridor.
However, some clearing will be needed, which has the required environmental approvals.   

Fauna management
During construction, any areas marked for clearing will be inspected for animals. Any animals found will be relocated by a qualified specialist and this will take place, where practicable, outside of the main nesting/breeding season of fauna species – usually spring and summer.

Noise, vibration and light
Planning is underway to ensure introducing the passenger lines means noise and vibration levels are no worse and, where possible, are better than existing levels experienced by the community.

Based on studies and early designs, an initial operational noise and vibration assessment has recommended noise walls in certain locations and anti-vibration ballast matting under both the freight and passenger lines. This is being reviewed and updated as the designs progress.

A Construction Noise and Vibration Management Plan will be followed to minimise potential impacts during construction.

Lighting for the shared path and station areas will be directed away from residential properties as much as possible.

Aboriginal heritage
METRONET acknowledges the People of the Noongar Nation as the Traditional Custodians of the land and waters on which the METRONET Program of Projects is located. We pay our respects to their Elders, both past, present and emerging, and thank them for their continuing connection to country, culture and community.

Duplicating the rail bridge over the Canning River will occur within an Aboriginal heritage site. While the project impact is expected to be minimal, necessary approvals have been obtained. Also, specialist Aboriginal people will be engaged to monitor the initial ground work to ensure there are no heritage sites or artefacts disturbed within these areas.


Keeping the community informed is a key project priority. Community members can stay up to date in a number of ways:

  • Register for project updates
  • Follow METRONET on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, LinkedIn and YouTube
  • Join our dedicated project Facebook Group
  • Email or call 9326 3666 with your queries

Community Reference Groups

The Thornlie-Cockburn Link Community Reference Groups (CRGs) consists of local residents and businesses who represent the community and will help the project team identify local opportunities, issues and concerns. CRGs act as a sounding board regarding the delivery and impacts of the project throughout the construction phase. CRG members bring feedback or collect community enquiries for discussion in the meetings.

Given the breadth of the Thornlie-Cockburn Link, and the density of surrounding residential areas, two zones were identified and CRGs were formed for each - an east and west zone either side of Nicholson Road. Formed in July 2019, the CRGs represent a range of demographics, locations across the project area, interest, opinions and experience.

Thornlie-Cockburn Link CRG West members are:

Alec Frith, Christine Hulley, Curtis Mckinley, Patricia Skinner, Robert Stanton, Scott Kivelhan, Senthilatiban Vembaiyan, Todd Wood and Zaaren Dhanbhoora.

The minutes of each meeting are published below.

Meeting 1 | August 14, 2019 - Minutes

Meeting 2 | November 6, 2019 - Minutes

Meeting 3 | March, 11, 2020 - Minutes #3

Thornlie-Cockburn Link CRG East members are:

Amanda McCormack, Anoop Malaviya, Derek Muttitt, Ernest Nnadigwe, Kelly Ibbitson, Kirsty Connell, Kishin Bhavnan, Molly Tebo, Rebecca Druce and Veronica Ye.

The minutes of each meeting are published below.

Meeting 1 | August 22, 2019 - Minutes

Meeting 2 | November 14, 2019 - Minutes

Meeting 3 | March 18, 2020 Cancelled – Refer CRG West Minutes #3

Local businesses

Minimising construction impacts on business and residents is a high priority and will continue throughout the project.

The Small Business Development Corporation (SBDC) Small Business Friendly Projects program has a number of resources available to small businesses who may be impacted by construction works. The SBDC website contains downloadable guides.

Visit the SBDC website here or you can also connect with them through Facebook

In the meantime, if your business is associated with the construction industry, there are opportunities to be involved, email the procurement team at

Project Update

Place Making

While transport projects can be planned and delivered in a relatively defined timeframe, the associated development around a station can take longer.
For the Thornlie-Cockburn Link, the METRONET Office will continue to work with state agencies, local governments and the private sector to help transition the areas around Nicholson Road, Ranford Road and Thornlie stations into mixed-use centres.

  • General Project

  • How long will construction take?

    The first trains on the Thornlie-Cockburn Link trains will run in 2023.

  • Will the Thornlie-Cockburn Link be opened in sections or all at once?

    The Thornlie-Cockburn Link will open all at once. 

  • How will construction traffic be managed?

    Construction vehicles will be in the area while the Thornlie-Cockburn Link is built, but the impact on traffic conditions will be minimal.

  • How will you manage people parking on residential streets instead of station car parks?

    Managing street parking is the responsibility of local government and is outside the Public Transport Authority’s control. We will raise any concerns with the relevant local authorities.

  • How many parking bays will be installed at the stations?

    Designs include about 400 parking bays at Ranford Road Station and about 1,000 parking bays at Nicholson Road Station. Ranford Road Station car park will be designed to allow for future expansion as demand for parking increases.

  • What changes to the bus services will there be in the future?

    Some bus services will be redirected from Thornlie Station to the new Nicholson Road Station and a new route will be introduced linking Nicholson Road Station with Maddington Station. 
    Given its location along an existing high-frequency bus corridor, all passing services will be diverted into Ranford Road Station. A number of services will be extended, while some lower demand services will be truncated to terminate at the station.

    Final service details will be determined 12-18 months before operations begin. This will follow detailed planning and community consultation to develop a bus network that best aligns with local development and community needs.

  • Why build the Thornlie-Cockburn Link?

    The Thornlie-Cockburn Link area includes a mix of established and developing suburbs that are experiencing significant population growth due to the availability of urban zoned land and continuing demand for affordable land, particularly from young families. South of the Thornlie-Cockburn Link is an 80.8 km2 area of land that has poor public transport services, but is estimated to grow significantly in the future.

  • What is new in the project definition plan?

    The options analysis work completed during the business case phase, established the preferred solution for the projects.

    Since then, the METRONET Office with its partner agencies and stakeholders, have completed early engineering designs, environmental and ground analysis, land use planning to inform transport infrastructure design, construction requirements and other modelling.

    The result is a more detailed scope for the project, which will be used during procurement to select a contractor to deliver the work.

  • What modelling was done to estimate the patronage?

    Extensive modelling was undertaken to estimate patronage using data sources including passenger numbers, population growth, housing density and other demographic information. Modelling was conducted through the Department of Transport’s Strategic Transport Estimation Model (STEM).

  • What trains will use the Thornlie-Cockburn Link?

    All platforms will be built to  accommodate six-car trains for future use. However, the four-car A-series or three-car B-series train sets will be able to meet passenger demand for day one of operations.

  • Will this provide a special event service from Mandurah to Stadium Station?

    Yes, this project allows for a future Mandurah special event service to Stadium Station.

  • Can we change the names of Nicholson Road and Ranford Road stations?

    The station names are working project names based on their locations. The names will be subject to approval from the Geographic Naming Committee closer to project completion.

  • Is the project fully funded?

    A combined budget of $1.25 billion has been allocated to the Thornlie-Cockburn Link and Yanchep Rail Extension as a joint funding arrangement, with $700 million from the Commonwealth Government and $550 million from the WA Government.

  • When will works begin?

    Works are expected to begin in late 2019.

  • What employment opportunities will this project provide?

    It is expected the Thornlie-Cockburn Link will generate around 1,680 jobs. Any WA Government roles are advertised on the WA Jobs Board. Project roles are also being advertised through CPB Contractors and Downer Group.

  • Land use development

  • What land development opportunities are there around the new stations?

    In the short term, the Thornlie-Cockburn Link’s new station precincts at Nicholson Road and Ranford Road will support access to the new rail service, including parking and bus transfer facilities, as well as improved cycle and pedestrian links to surrounding residential and employment areas.

    In the medium-to-long term, the stations will be a catalyst for change in their immediate vicinity, encouraging the transformation of under-utilised urban and industrial land into new transit-oriented developments.

  • Who is responsible for these land developments?

    The METRONET Office will continue to work with key stakeholders, including local government, to guide any land planning and development to ensure the benefits of investing in good public transport are realised.

  • How will the Thornlie-Cockburn Link affect property values in the area?

    It is too early to forecast how this project will impact property values in the nearby area. Better transport connections have the potential to directly lift property values. Property values could also benefit indirectly because METRONET’s integrated planning approach enables denser development, leading to more amenities such as shops and health facilities. 

  • Nicholson Road Station

  • How will passengers access Nicholson Road Station?

    Nicholson Road Station users will access the station from a new shared path connection along Canna Drive (from Nicholson Road), bus and vehicle access through an upgraded Tulloch Way and Panama Street, and a new shared path connection from the underpass recently constructed as part of the Nicholson Road Bridge upgrade.

  • Will the local road network be upgraded as part of the project?

    Some roads that approach the station will be upgraded as part of this project. Changes to the network outside of the immediate project area will be managed by local government. Consultation is underway with Main Roads WA and local government to assess the local road network, including the Nicholson Road, Garden Street and Yale Road roundabout. Details will be provided as the project progresses

  • What pedestrian/cycling connections will there be?

    Consultation is underway with various local governments to assess the path network connections for pedestrians and cyclists. Details will be provided as they progress.

  • Will Nicholson Road Station connect to the Canning Vale area to the north?

    The Nicholson Road Station design allows for future connection to the north of the rail corridor, when demand in this area increases. The area around the station, such as the passenger car park, may change to support future developments.

  • What security measures will be put in place at Nicholson Road Station?

    Nicholson Road Station will be fitted with security measures that are standard at all PTA stations. This includes CCTV, lighting and clear sight lines throughout the area. In the future as development occurs around the station, passive security will also increase with the increase in activity in the area.

  • Ranford Road Station

  • How will passengers access Ranford Road Station?

    Ranford Road Station will be accessed from a precinct entry road off the proposed Jandakot Airport Eastern Link Road to the south-east of the station.

  • What are the traffic impacts associated with Ranford Road Station?

    As Ranford Road is an important distributor road serving both commuter traffic in peak periods and local traffic throughout the day. Planning is underway to minimise disruption during construction.

    This includes consultation with the City of Canning, Main Roads WA and community groups. The works will include upgrades to Ranford Road, construction of a new Ranford Road / Jandakot East Link Road signalised intersection, modified City of Canning Waste Transfer Station access and the new Ranford Road Station entry.

  • What security measures will be put in place at Ranford Road Station?

    Ranford Road Station will be fitted with security measures that are standard at all Transperth stations. These include CCTV, lighting and clear sight lines throughout the area. As development occurs around the station, passive security will also improve with an increase in activity in the area.

  • Environment

  • What are the Thornlie-Cockburn Link’s environmental and heritage considerations?

    Environmental and heritage considerations are a key priority for the Thornlie-Cockburn Link.
    Investigations and surveys have identified the following environmental and heritage considerations:

    • Clearing of native vegetation
    • Loss of fauna habitat
    • Disturbance of acid sulfate soils
    • Dewatering
    • Existing soil and groundwater contamination
    • Noise and vibration
    • Aboriginal heritage
    • Waste management

    These will be monitored and managed in consultation with the governing and regulatory authorities. 

  • Has the project received environmental approval?

    The Thornlie-Cockburn Link has environmental approvals from both the State and Federal governments.

  • How will impacts to Aboriginal heritage be managed?

    We recognise the importance of Aboriginal heritage and a METRONET Aboriginal Engagement Strategy has been developed. Initial studies for the Thornlie-Cockburn Link identified that works to duplicate the rail bridge over the Canning River will occur within a registered Aboriginal heritage site.

    Although the project impact to the Canning River is expected to be minimal, recognising the importance of this site to the Whadjuk land owners, the Public Transport Authority sought the relevant approvals for the proposed works. Aboriginal monitoring personnel will be engaged to monitor initial ground works to ensure any culturally significant material, if uncovered, is managed appropriately.

  • What has been done to minimise the amount of land being cleared for the Thornlie-Cockburn Link?

    The Thornlie-Cockburn Link’s original development envelope was reviewed to minimise the amount of vegetation clearing. Thorough engineering and environmental reviews of the project’s original development area reduced the amount of native vegetation to be cleared and potential habitat trees likely to be impacted. Also, the Caladenia Grove Wetland Reserve was avoided.

  • Will replanting will take place after construction is completed?

    Yes. Where possible, replanting of areas with fast-growing small native shrubs and trees will occur following construction. Replanting will be limited within the rail reserve due to visibility and rail safety rules.

    Larger or more mature trees are generally not replanted due to a lower success rate of uptake. To ensure the best chance for survival, the planting will be mostly smaller, fast-growing native plants that will reach maturity in a shorter time.

    Rehabilitation of the impacted Canning River banks will be undertaken with input sought from the local environmental community groups.

  • How will vegetation clearing and animal relocation be managed during construction?

    The existing rail corridor has been largely cleared of native vegetation and is maintained as an active freight rail corridor. However, some clearing will be required and the environmental conditions outlined in the approvals will ensure this is done in an environmentally responsible way. 

    Prior to vegetation clearing, all areas will undergo fauna trapping by a licensed contractor, with any captured fauna relocated to a suitable location advised by the Department of Biodiversity, Conservation and Attractions.

  • How will noise and vibration be managed during construction?

    All works will follow a Construction Noise and Vibration Management Plan, in accordance with the Environmental Protection (Noise) Regulations 1997.  The plan will detail how potential noise and vibration impacts will be minimised and how impacted properties will be kept informed.

  • How will noise and vibration be managed when the lines become operational?

    Initial noise and vibration modelling recommended a combination of up to four-metre high noise walls in certain locations and anti-vibration ballast matting under both the freight and passenger lines to minimise noise and vibration. This is being refined as the design progresses.

  • How will impact to my property be managed during construction?

    Construction management plans will be followed and include mitigations to minimise impacts to nearby properties. A pre-condition survey was offered to property owners close to the rail alignment and there was a high level of participation. This survey information will form part of managing any damage that may occur during construction.


Project Documents

Latest News

Environmental green light for the Thornlie-Cockburn Link

Environmental green light for the Thornlie-Cockburn Link

Reducing environmental and heritage impacts are a key priority for METRONET projects.  

Going out with a bang

Going out with a bang

2019 was a huge year for METRONET with a number of major milestones had.

Major contract signed

Major contract signed

It’s official – the contract with NEWest Alliance was signed today to build 32 kilometres of additional rail to Perth’s network, as early works started on the Thornlie-Cockburn Link.

NEWest Alliance to build two METRONET projects

NEWest Alliance to build two METRONET projects

The preferred alliance to construct both the Yanchep Rail Extension and Thornlie-Cockburn Link is NEWest Alliance. 

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