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Business trends

Australia's urban boom breathes new life into light rail

Asia-Pacific seen as biggest railway market as traffic jams cause headaches

Sydney's Dulwich Hill light rail line has received growing ridership since opening in 1997. (Photo by Fumi Matsumoto)

SYDNEY/TOKYO -- Australia is quickly bringing back the street-level rail lines that used to dominate the country before automobiles rose to prominence, as urban centers swamped with transplants look to ease congestion.

Sydney's 2.1 billion Australian dollar ($1.58 billion) light-rail project, which broke ground in 2015, will snake through 12km of cityscape after its expected completion next year. Because several of the 19 stops will be located on George Street, parts of the bustling city-center avenue have been shut down for construction.

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