Queensland state government has launched the tender process for the second Toowoomba Range crossing (TSRC) project as a public private partnership.
The procurement phase has started with a Registration of Interest (ROI), which closes on Friday, 7 March 2014. The registration process will move to a formal Expression of Interest stage over the next couple of months. A successful contractor will be named later this year, with construction expected to begin by mid-2015.
The project cost is estimated at A$1.6 billion (US$1.4 billion). The federal government has so far committed a total of $43.25 million for the planning activities and land acquisitions.
The Registration of Interest is supported by financial commitments to the project by the Australian and Queensland Governments.
Deputy Premier Jeff Seeney stated:
We spent a long time looking at a whole range of options. It's a good option because the funding arrangement guarantees $1.7 billion. It allows the private sector to bring in their expertise.
The TSRC is a bypass route to the north of Toowoomba, approximately 41km in length, running from the Warrego Highway at Helidon in the east to the Gore Highway at Athol in the west via Charlton. Toowoomba plays a role in Queensland's transport network by acting as a hub for the Darling Downs and a gateway to the developing energy sector in the Surat Basin.
The project will provide an alternative range crossing for the increasing traffic volumes that are putting pressure on the highway network that passes through Toowoomba and over the Toowoomba Range.
The project is the largest Commonwealth Government commitment to a single regional road project in Queensland history.
See Registration of Interest document: