The NSW and Australian governments are getting on with building world class infrastructure by today announcing the first construction contract for WestConnex, paving the way for major works to get under way from early next year.
NSW Roads Minister Duncan Gay and Federal Assistant Infrastructure Minister Jamie Briggs said the first project to get underway was the widening of Sydney’s M4.
“We have chosen the Rizzani De Eccher Leighton joint venture to design and construct the M4 Widening which will widen the motorway between Parramatta and Homebush from three lanes to four lanes each way,” Mr Briggs said.
“It brings together one of the best companies from overseas with one of Australia’s biggest road builders.
“This is an important milestone in the delivery of WestConnex and means construction can get underway on the 7.5 kilometre project in the New Year, subject to planning approval.
“We are working closely with the NSW Government to fast-track completion of WestConnex which will provide more than $20 billion in economic benefits to New South Wales and create 10,000 jobs.
“The WestConnex motorway will transform Sydney by fixing the M4 and M5 and join them together in a continuous free flowing motorway connecting to Sydney’s CBD, Airport and Port,” Mr Briggs said.
“The M4 Widening between Church Street and Homebush Bay Drive is quite simply a project which should have been delivered a decade ago,” Mr Gay said.
“The M4 Widening will create about 2,000 jobs in Western Sydney and is expected to be completed in 2017.
“It will target congestion on one of Sydney’s major motorway corridors and cut travel times by up to 74 per cent on this section.
“It means less car time and more time at home with family or doing business.
“The M4 Widening on its own is not WestConnex but it is a vital part of Stage One which will join the M4 East tunnel – another project on the books in NSW for so long but never delivered under the former state government.
“The travel savings on WestConnex include cutting 40 minutes on a typical journey between Parramatta and Sydney Airport bypassing up to 52 sets of traffic lights,” Mr Gay said.
The M4 Widening will see increased capacity between Parramatta and Homebush as well as ramp upgrades, including new direct access from southbound Homebush Bay Drive to the M4 westbound through a G-ramp, removing the need for a right turn at the traffic lights and eliminating a well-known pinch point.
In addition, a new M4 connection for motorists heading eastbound from Hill Road will be installed, supporting the growth around Sydney Olympic Park.
The NSW Government is providing $1.8 billion worth of funding for WestConnex and the Australian Government $1.5 billion, in addition to concessional loan of up to $2 billion to fast-track Stage 2 of WestConnex from Beverly Hills to St Peters.