On 4 June 2014, Australia's Minister for Transport Gladys Berejiklian announced green light had been given for the new light rail system for CBD and South East Sydney, which is being delivered though a PPP procurement.
Ms Berejiklian stated:
I am delighted the project has received formal planning approval. The NSW Government is getting on with the job of building new infrastructure that will improve services for transport customers, increase productivity and support economic growth.
Ms Berejiklian said approval of the CBD and South East Light Rail includes conditions to address key impacts during construction and operation of the new light rail system.
In early March the Transport for New South Wales invited three international shortlisted consortia to participate in the request for proposals (RFP) to finance, design, construction, operation and maintenance of a new light rail system for the CBD and south east Sydney and the operation and maintenance of the Inner West Light Rail.
The shortlisted consortia were the following:
The contract will cover design, construction, services relocations, operation and maintenance of the 12-kilometre project, as well as the operation and maintenance of the Inner West Light Rail network.
The project is estimated to cost approximately A$1.6 billion. Construction is expected to commence this year 2014 and is expected to take five or six years to complete. From mid-2015, the successful tenderer will also operate and maintain the existing light rail network.
The main contract to design, build, operate and maintain the new system is expected to be awarded by early 2015 with major construction commencing soon after. The service is expected to be open and operational in 2019 or 2020.