The appointment by the Australian Capital Territory (ACT) government is intended to facilitate the design and planning approvals to meet an updated delivery schedule that see the first early works begin before the end of this year. Planning and works approvals are planned to be lodged around October this year.
Major construction works will start in 2022, followed by construction of the first 1.7km of the light rail line to Commonwealth Park.
At the same time, the ACT government is getting on with delivering the new public transport interchange and light rail station at Woden, with construction works set to begin before the end of 2021.
Planning and design for the rest of the line to Woden will continue while these construction works are under way.
“It’s exciting to see our city’s biggest infrastructure project kicking into gear, which we expect will create over 6000 jobs during design and construction," said Minister Steel. "The benefits of this project will be long lasting for Canberra, with the creation of a frequent and reliable transport spine that better connects our major town centres and residential and employment hubs."
Steel said that Aecom has been selected as the project’s technical adviser because of the firm’s proven track record on delivering light rail projects and securing high quality infrastructure outcomes for the community. “We are committed to local industry participation in the project. Aecom has an established office here in Canberra where they will engage more than 160 locally-based specialists to deliver the different stages of this significant project.”
Aecom’s Canberra Area Manager, Karen Billington, said the company is honoured to be selected by the ACT Government to design Stage 2 of light rail between the city and Woden. “It is an opportunity to give back to the community around us and further enhance Canberra’s status as one of the world’s most liveable and competitive cities,” she said. “We are looking forward to sharing our insights from other light rail projects and working on this transformational major infrastructure project which combines urban design, place-making, heritage, sustainability, environment and engineering.”
ACT senator Zed Seselja said: “Infrastructure investment is critical to support jobs and the economy as we recover from the impacts of Covid-19, and I’m proud the Australian Government is committed to investing in Canberra. Our $132.5 million [£74m] commitment to Stage 2A of light rail is just part of the Australian Government’s $1.4 billion [£780m] Canberra infrastructure bonanza, backing local jobs and our local economy."