Canberra Metro named as successful light rail consortium

Canberra Metro Logo The first stage of Canberra’s light rail network will be delivered by a world-class consortium, Canberra Metro, sooner and with a capital cost lower than earlier estimated, ACT Chief Minister Andrew Barr and Minister for Capital Metro Simon Corbell have announced.

Canberra Metro will construct and operate stage one of Canberra’s light rail from Gungahlin to the City.

Canberra Metro’s proposal offers an innovative and world-class solution that will deliver better transport for Canberra. The first stage of Canberra’s light rail network, the corridor from Gungahlin to City, represents a timely investment in a more convenient, efficient, affordable and reliable integrated transport system – a genuine alternative to driving.

The winning consortium, comprising of Pacific Partnerships, CPB Contractors, John Holland,
Mitsubishi Corporation, Aberdeen Infrastructure Investments, Deutsche Bahn International and CAF has a proven track record of transport construction and operation both within Australia and overseas.

Between them they will deliver on 12km of light rail track, 13 stops, 14 light rail vehicles, a depot and 20 years of operation and maintenance.

Light rail will operate from as early as 6am and up to 1am with services every 6 minutes during peak times. It will integrate with buses and other forms of transport to provide an efficient service that will change the way Canberrans move around their city.Artist Impression of light rail on Flemington Road

While the final cost will be confirmed when contracts are signed, the capital cost included in the winning bid is $698 million, with a variance of 5 per cent depending on contract negotiations and changes in market conditions between now and contract closure.

Additionally, Canberra Metro will complete construction in late 2018 and begin operations in early 2019. This is sooner than previous estimates and means less disruption for Canberrans and faster access to the transformational effects of this city changing project.

Importantly, as Northbourne Avenue and the Federal Highway are the entry to the national capital, the removal and replacement of trees will be staged to minimise the visual impact. This staged approach will mean that as sections of trees are removed, and replaced with 4m tall plantings, there will only be periods of 3-4 months where each section will be without trees.

This is a great result for the people of Canberra, who will be getting the foundation of a world-class public transport system that is planned to expand across the city over the next 25 years. A transport system that will change the way the city grows and change the way that people move around it.

With more than 220 years of combined experience in systems engineering, light rail operations and maintenance, and providing 2.2 billion passenger journeys each year across 14 countries, Canberra can be confident that the consortium will deliver this transformational project.

The Public Private Partnership with Canberra Metro will allow the ACT Government to draw upon the expertise and technical infrastructural knowledge of high class consortium, and support Canberra’s trade, investment and local business.

This project will help stimulate Canberra’s economy through public and private investment, delivering opportunities for new business which will also support job opportunities and apprenticeships for locals.

It also means an alternative transport option with an integrated public transport system, helping to reduce our carbon footprint as more people leave their cars at home and choose to use public transport.

The Chief Minister said a decision on a possible extension to Russell will be made this year as discussions continue with the Federal Government.

Read more about Canberra Metro.