The Thornlie-Cockburn Link in Perth, Western Australia, already approved by state authorities, has received federal environmental approval.

Thr project forms part of the Western Australian Government’s METRONET programme.

Early works to expand the Karel Avenue bridge for the new rail corridor started late last year.

The 17.5km-long Thornlie-Cockburn Link will connect the Mandurah and Armadale lines in Perth. It will also involve the construction of stations at Ranford Road and Nicholson Road.

It will also upgrade the Cockburn Central and Thornlie stations.

The submission for environmental approval included measures to address environmental issues raised by the public and regulatory agencies.

Before the construction of the rail link begins, native vegetation must be cleared. The approval conditions require environmentally responsible work.

Additionally, a licensed contractor needs to carry out the fauna trapping before the clearing of the vegetation.

In December, the Government of Western Australia signed a contract with NEWest Alliance to construct the Yanchep Rail Extension and Thornlie-Cockburn Link.

The NEWest Alliance consists of CIMIC Group company CPB Contractors and integrated services company Downer.

Transport Minister Rita Saffioti said: “Environmental and heritage considerations are a key priority for the Thornlie-Cockburn Link and these approvals mark an important step forward for this much-anticipated project.

“The McGowan Government is strongly committed to sustainable development, and we want to ensure this important project provides the amenities and features the community wants, and that it is delivered in a sustainable way.

“This new rail service will deliver more than 1,600 jobs and create greater transport connectivity and convenience throughout our southern suburbs. This will make our State even more liveable and commercially stronger.”