The major works contract for Stage 3 of the Gold Coast light rail, from Broadbeach to Burleigh Heads, has been finalised, with major works set to commence in late April.
Stage 3 is being funded by the Federal and Queensland Governments, along with the City of Gold Coast.
Queensland Premier, Annastacia Palaszczuk, said signing the contract on the Broadbeach to Burleigh stage was a massive milestone for a project ahead of the 2032 Games.
“This will support hundreds of jobs,” Ms Palaszczuk said.
“We know Gold Coasters love light rail, with the G recently clocking a milestone 60 million trips taken since it opened.
“We know how successful light rail was during the 2018 Commonwealth Games and this next stage will play a key role in moving people between venues at the 2032 Olympic and Paralympic Games.
“It’s thanks to my government’s commitment to growing the Gold Coast that we can deliver transformational projects like this that will create 760 jobs for Queenslanders, driving our recovery from the pandemic and the floods.”
Since mid-2021, early works have paved the way for the major works package to commence in 2022, with more than 1000 underground service and environmental investigations undertaken along with initial site mobilisation and detailed design activity.
Federal Minister for Communications, Urban Infrastructure, Cities and the Arts, Paul Fletcher, said the project would support local jobs and enhance public transport connectivity.
“The Gold Coast is a major growth region, which is why the Federal Government continues to invest significantly in infrastructure projects – including $395.6 million for Stage 3 of the Gold Coast Light Rail – that ease congestion and help commuters get home sooner and safer,” Mr Fletcher said.
“The Federal Government continues to put Queenslanders first, with over $3.9 billion committed to the state’s infrastructure pipeline in the 2022-23 Federal Budget alone – an investment that will support around 20,500 jobs.”
Queensland Transport and Main Roads Minister, Mark Bailey, said the start of major works were on track to commence in coming weeks.
“Stage 3 is the next step in delivering the envisioned 42km light rail connection from Helensvale to Coolangatta,” Mr Bailey said.
“There has been a significant amount of early works already undertaken by John Holland and we will now see construction works increase significantly on site.”
At this rate, operations between Broadbeach and Burleigh Heads are set to commence by mid-2025.
Stage 3 will deliver a 6.7km extension south of the existing G:link network with two traffic lanes retained on either side of the light rail tracks on the Gold Coast Highway.
This 6.7km stretch will also see eight new stations delivered for locals through the Gold Coast’s southern suburbs, including Nobby’s Beach, Miami and Burleigh Heads.
This project is part of the State Government’s record $27.5 billion road and transport plan. Of the $27.5 billion, nearly $5 billion in projects will be delivered through the South Coast region, taking in the Gold Coast, Logan and Scenic Rim council areas.
Federal Member for Moncrieff, Angie Bell said, “The Federal Government is committed to delivering the required infrastructure for the upcoming 2032 Olympic Games while also providing generational infrastructure investment to secure a stronger future for the Gold Coast.”
Gold Coast-based State Government Minister, Meaghan Scanlon, welcomed the announcement, which signalled the creation of employment and training opportunities for the South East.
“With more and more people choosing to make Queensland their home, it’s important that we are delivering the transport infrastructure people want and will use,” Ms Scanlon said.
“We know the light rail is a resounding success, having completed more than 60 million passenger trips and it is a critical part of meeting the city’s ever increasing transport needs.”
With on-demand transport trials, the $1 billion upgrades underway on the M1 between Tugun and Varsity Lakes, and work progressing on the Second M1, this next stage of light rail will be another way we can keep the Gold Coast moving.
“Previous stages of the light rail saw 90 per cent of workers coming from the Gold Coast and surrounding regions, which I’m hopeful we will continue to see on Stage 3,” Ms Scanlon said.
GoldlinQ Chairman, John Witheriff, said local contractors and workers have already been engaged on Stage 3 during early works and this will continue, with John Holland committing to high levels of local participation.
“We want this to be another local project built by local workers to ensure Stage 3 benefits the city during construction and once it is operational,” Mr Witheriff said.
“From previous stages of light rail construction, we understand the importance of locating underground services as this minimises delays once major works commence, and this has been the focus of early works.
“We also understand the importance of working closely with businesses and residents along the corridor and this will continue to be a priority throughout the construction and commissioning period.”