The Federal Government have also committed $2 billion to the project, which is expected to deliver a journey 15 minutes faster than current times between Geelong and Melbourne.
Stage One of the project will see a dedicated new express track built on the Werribee rail corridor. Some services will also continue to run through Sunshine and Wyndham Vale to provide connection to the western suburbs and the future airport rail line.
Upgrades will result in the shortest and most direct line between Geelong and Melbourne, around 8 kilometres shorter than the current route through Sunshine and Wyndham Vale.
The first stage of construction is expected to provide 2800 jobs, with construction set to begin in 2023.
North Geelong, North Shore and Lara stations will receive $24 million worth of upgrades in total to make the stations safer and more comfortable.
The Corio to Waurn Ponds section of the Geelong Line will also get part of a $90.5 million package to upgrade track and level crossing upgrades across the regional network.
Between 2009 and 2019 patronage on the Geelong line grew 191 per cent. Geelong’s population is also expected to double to 485,000 by 2051 which will increase demand on the rail network.
Both levels of government are now working on detailed planning and technical investigations to inform the business case for the first stage of construction. Work is also underway to scope future investments for the Geelong corridor.