Buses will enter the $160 million O-Bahn City Tunnel for the first time for testing in preparation for passenger services due to commence late 2017.

Four different bus models including articulated buses will travel through the 670m tunnel to trial the guided busway system.

The tunnel’s emergency sprinkler system will also be tested, with a full emergency exercise involving Police, Ambulance and Metropolitan Fire Service officers planned for November 2017.

Following the testing phase a period of bus driver training will commence.

The O-Bahn is Adelaide’s most popular public transport service with 30,000 boardings on an average weekday.

The project will also improve travel times and reliability for more than 79,000 road users who use this part of the Inner Ring Route at the intersection of Hackney Road and Botanic Road.

With major construction works on the tunnel now complete, the focus is on site remediation and landscaping works in Rundle, Rymill, Botanic Parks and upgrading East Terrace and Rundle Road.

Works on East Terrace and Rundle Road include the reconfiguration of Rundle Road and East Terrace to deliver improved pedestrian and cycling facilities, 50 additional car parks, additional landscaping and upgrade of the existing kerbing and pavement surface.

These works are being delivered in stages to minimise the impact on traffic, parking availability, local businesses and residents.

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