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Gold Coast Rapid Transit tender issued (13/05/2010)

The highly-anticipated Gold Coast Rapid Transit project has taken a further step towards reality today with Premier Anna Bligh and Federal Transport Minister Anthony Albanese opening bids for $110 million worth of roadwork contracts.

This is the largest package of early works contracts released so far, and will provide a shot in the arm for the local construction industry.

The works support stage one of the project, a 13-kilometre light rail corridor connecting Griffith University and the new 750-bed Gold Coast University Hospital to Broadbeach, passing through the key centres of Southport and Surfers Paradise.

Bligh says the project is the first light rail network in any regional Australian city and is part of managing the enormous growth that has occurred on the Coast.

“These major tenders confirm the project will be delivered and we will build a transport network that will take 75,000 cars off Gold Coast roads when it is completed in 2014,” she says.

“This will provide a fully integrated public transport system and a more affordable and reliable alternative to car travel for all Coast residents, boosting public transport use from 4 percent to 10 percent.

“Let me be perfectly clear – it is full steam ahead for rapid transit. It is becoming a reality and that’s great news for the Gold Coast.”

Albanese says the project is part of the Rudd Government’s unprecedented $37 billion investment in transport infrastructure.

“Our record investment is aimed at building more sustainable communities, a more productive economy and supporting the economic recovery,” he says.

“This project ticks all the boxes – it will slash greenhouse gas emissions 114,000 tonnes within its first decade of operation and generate more than 6,300 direct and indirect jobs for locals.

“After a decade of neglect, the national government is now back in the business of building our cities, and these tenders show we are serious about better infrastructure for the Gold Coast.”

Bligh says the road-works package will be delivered using a competitive early contractor involvement (ECI) approach.

“The project team has identified two government-funded packages valued at approximately $110 million that will lay the foundations for the future light rail system,” she says.

Advertising for the two road works will commence over the next week with the packages divided geographically into two areas: road works north (Southport); and road works south (Broadbeach).

The works would include road widening, the relocation of public utilities and accommodation works such as the reinstatement of driveways, fencing and car parks.

“These works are vital in preparing the stage one corridor for the laying of the light rail tracks and the construction of stations which will be conducted by the appointed operator from 2012-2014,” Bligh says.

“We are seeking Main Roads pre-qualified and experienced contractors to bid for the road-works packages and I would encourage all interested contractors to visit the e-tenders website www.tenders.qld.gov.au for more information.”

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