Gold Coast Rapid Transit on track with $68 million contracts awarded

Posted: 7 October 2010 | Queensland Government | No comments yet

Two contracts worth $68 million have been awarded for early works on Queensland’s first light rail system…

Two contracts worth $68 million have been awarded for early works on Queensland’s first light rail system...

Two contracts worth $68 million have been awarded for early works on Queensland’s first light rail system.

Premier Anna Bligh and Federal Infrastructure and Transport Anthony Albanese today announced Seymour Whyte Constructions and Baulderstone Pty Ltd as the successful tenderers to prepare the Gold Coast Rapid Transit corridor for construction.

“These two contracts are expected to create about 800 direct and indirect jobs, while Stage One of the Gold Coast light rail project will generate 6300 direct and indirect jobs in total,” Ms Bligh said.

“Before the light rail system can be built, the roads it will travel on have to be prepared so this early work will include surveying, road widening, intersection upgrades, landscaping, concreting and paving.

“Services located under the road such as the gas, water and telecommunications also have to be moved to a more accessible location to allow for future repairs and upgrades.”

Mr Albanese said that “When it comes to public transport infrastructure, the Gillard Labor Government means what it says and does what it promises.”

“In just 18 months we’ve taken this light rail project from the drawing board to the start of construction, with the awarding of these two latest contracts a signal it’s now full steam ahead with delivering this long awaited new piece of infrastructure.

“What’s more, funding for this project was provided as part of our recession-busting, job-creating Economic Stimulus Plan, the very initiative the Federal Coalition voted against early last year and have consistently opposed ever since.

“Indeed if Steve Ciobo, Stuart Robert and their Liberal colleagues had got their way last year, a light rail network on the Gold Coast would still be nothing more than a dream.

“Only the Gillard Labor Government has a plan to move our cities forward, one which recognises the task of renewing and expanding their public transport infrastructure requires a partnership between all the levels of government.”

Gold Coast Mayor Ron Clarke welcomed the announcement, saying the early commencement of road works necessary for the project would provide a jobs boost for the local construction industry.

“This heralds the project kicking into full swing and that’s great news for employment on the Gold Coast,” said Mayor Clarke.

“The light rail is truly a city-changing project and once complete, will transform our public transport network and the transport options available to our residents and visitors.

“Obviously, with the road works getting underway, there will be some short term pain for residents and motorists – but the long term gain will be well worth it. The Rapid Transit Project team will be keeping the community informed on a regular basis on the progress of these works and I plead with residents to be patient during this time of transition over the next two years.”

Transport Minister Rachel Nolan said that Southport roadworks will take place in the following areas:

  • Queen Street west between Wardoo Street and Nerang Street
  • Nerang Street from Queen Street to Scarborough Street
  • Queen Street east between Scarborough Street and the Gold Coast Highway

Broadbeach roadworks and will take place along the Gold Coast Highway between the intersections of Thornton Street and Australia Avenue.

Ms Nolan said local residents would be kept informed of works, which are expected to take approximately 12 months to complete.

“Residents and businesses will be advised in advance of any work, the nature of the work and the working hours,” she said.

“Contractors will be required to minimise the impact on the traffic network and demonstrate the highest levels of safety at construction sites.

“When Stage One of Gold Coast Rapid Transit is complete in 2014, it will be a world class public transport system which will change the way people move around the coast.

“The 13 kilometre dedicated light rail corridor will service the new Gold Coast University Hospital, Griffith University, Southport medical precinct and the fast growing commercial, retail and recreational centres of Southport, Surfers Paradise and Broadbeach.”

The interactive tendering process to determine the successful consortium to construct and operate the light rail system is well progressed with submissions expected in late November 2010 and a successful consortium to be announced in June 2011.

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