A preferred proponent has been selected to build the Tonkin Gap project and associated works for the METRONET Morley-Ellenbrook Line.

Tonkin Gap Alliance – comprising BMD, Georgiou, WA Limestone, BG&E and GHD – will work with Main Roads to deliver the project, which is expected to support around 3,000 jobs.

The project will fix a major bottleneck on Tonkin Highway between Morley and Redcliffe, which more than 120,000 cars and trucks use on an average weekday.

Works will focus on the section between Collier Road and Dunreath Drive, upgrading it to a three-lane, freeway-standard road that will significantly reduce travel times and improve safety.

Upgrades include new interchanges at Guildford Road and Great Eastern Highway and new bridge structures over the Swan River (Redcliffe Bridge) and Guildford Road. Cyclists and pedestrians will also benefit from a new Principal Shared Path and pedestrian bridge.

The Alliance will undertake rail-enabling works for the METRONET Morley-Ellenbrook Line, as part of four works packages that will deliver the train line.

These works include modifications to Tonkin Highway between Railway Parade and Hepburn Avenue, including replacement of the existing Broun Avenue flyover.

Two dive structures will also be built at Bayswater and Malaga to enable the rail line to enter and exit the middle of Tonkin Highway.

A contract will be awarded in late June 2020, with construction on the Morley-Ellenbrook Line enabling works starting in coming months. The whole Tonkin Gap project is expected to be completed in 2023.

Tonkin Gap is jointly funded with the Federal Government contributing 80 per cent of the project share.

Western Australian Premier, Mark McGowan, said the project was part of a pipeline of major road projects – worth an estimated $2.37 billion which would create more than 13,000 jobs – that the Western Australian Government was accelerating.

“Our record investment in major road projects and METRONET will set up our suburbs for the long term and benefit Western Australians, now and into the future,” Mr McGowan said.

“In times like these it’s important we continue to progress the projects that will provide work for local businesses and keep workers in their jobs – this will ultimately support the state’s wider economy.”

Federal Minister for Population, Cities and Urban Infrastructure, Alan Tudge, said the project would transform a notorious part of the road network for Perth’s growing outer-northern suburbs.

“In addition, it will create thousands of new jobs at a time when what we want is to get Australians back to work,” Mr Tudge said.  

“Our $100 billion infrastructure pipeline is setting the foundations for economic recovery on the other side of the COVID-19 crisis.”

Western Australian Minister for Transport and Planning, Rita Saffioti, said road and rail projects would play a key part in WA’s economic recovery, and the Tonkin Gap project would fix one of Perth’s most congested roads while laying the groundwork for the METRONET Morley-Ellenbrook Line. 

“Road and rail projects will play a key part to WA’s economic recovery going forward. This project will fix one of Perth’s most congested roads while laying the groundwork for the METRONET Morley-Ellenbrook Line,” Ms Saffioti said.

“Tonkin Gap is a major component of the train line to Ellenbrook, with two dive structures and the foundation for the rail included in the project scope.

“Together with New Bayswater Station procurement, we now have two out of three major contracts for Morley-Ellenbrook Line at an advanced stage.

“Removing this bottleneck along this section of Tonkin Highway will unlock the potential of Tonkin Highway. 

“It’s just one of several upgrades we have planned for Tonkin Highway, with upgrades planned for the intersections of Kelvin, Welshpool and Hale roads. 

“Building this project, combined with construction of other nearby major projects like the new Bayswater Station and Morley-Ellenbrook Line, will help support the WA economy through some tough times ahead.”

Federal Member for Swan, Steve Irons, welcomed the announcement to commence the important part of the Tonkin Highway upgrades. 

“It will benefit all those who travel on this route which is congested every day and the 80 per cent project funding by the Morrison Government demonstrates the commitment to congestion busting infrastructure all over Australia,” Mr Irons said. 

“Anyone who travels this route every day knows how congested it gets, and the sooner it is completed the better it will be for all those travellers.

“Tonkin Highway is an important part of our local and state-wide economy as it services not only people travelling to and from work but also the transport hub of Western Australia based in my electorate of Swan.”

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