The government of Victoria in Australia has released the request for proposal (RFP) to build the A$518m ($397m) Ballarat line.

The new project is expected to create space for more trains with greater frequency on the Ballarat line.

As part of the upgrade works, a 17km section of single track between Deer Park West and Melton will be doubled, which will lead the way for future electrification of the line to Melton.

The project will also duplicate a 3km section of track east of Warrenheip.

Victoria Minister for Public Transport Jacinta Allan said: "This half a billion dollar project will give the people of Ballarat, Melton and Melbourne’s west the services they deserve, with space for more trains, more often.

“It’s the biggest rail project in regional Victoria, and we want the best in business to build it.”

"This half a billion dollar project will give the people of Ballarat, Melton and Melbourne’s west the services they deserve, with space for more trains, more often."

Furthermore, new crossing loops will be built and new train stabling is planned to be created at Melton and Rowsley in order to support more frequent services.

Second platforms will come up at Bacchus Marsh and Ballan stations, and the extension of existing platforms will take place at Rockbank Station to enable passengers to use each carriage to get on or off the train.

For the Ballarat Line upgrade, around 200 geotechnical investigations will be carried out.

Investigations that started earlier this month in Ballan are currently being performed between Caroline Springs and Rockbank and are set to continue over the coming months.

Major construction works on the Ballarat line upgrade are expected to start early next year, with the project due for completion by late-2019.