Different route options between Bayswater and Perth Airport were investigated to find the best way to accommodate existing road layouts and future upgrades, while minimising impact on landowners and traffic and keeping costs in check.
Ultimately, it was decided the most appropriate rail route would be through underground tunnels, with the new Airport Line spurring off the existing Midland Line between Bayswater and Ashfield Stations, before progressing underground at Bayswater Junction.
The route travels underneath the Tonkin Highway and Brearley Avenue road reserves into the Perth Airport Estate and on to the Public Transport Authority freight rail reserve in Forrestfield, where trains will resurface just before High Wycombe Station.
As the line will be located almost entirely underground, the impact on surrounding communities will be minimal, both during construction and once the line is operational.
There are two types of trains that operate on the Public Transport Authority transport system: A-series and B-series trains. The Airport Line will see the use of B-series trains.
B-series trains were first introduced into service in 2004. There are currently 78 sets (234 railcars) of B-series trains operating in Western Australia. The final ten of these sets – the last of which went into service in June 2019 – were acquired specifically for Airport Line operations.