CONSTRUCTION of the $1 billion Gateway WA project has passed the halfway mark and is due to be completed six months earlier than originally scheduled, with final completion projected by mid-2016, ahead of the planned consolidation of the domestic and international Perth airport terminals.
Federal Assistant Minister for Infrastructure and Regional Development Jamie Briggs said that when complete, Gateway WA would deliver a fully upgraded road network around the consolidated Perth Airport terminal and nearby Kewdale and Forrestfield industrial estates.
Gateway WA is the largest road project ever to be undertaken in Perth and is jointly funded by the Australian ($676 million) and the Western Australian ($310 million) governments. It is being delivered by an alliance contract involving a partnership between Mains Roads WA and Leighton Contractors, Georgiou, GHD, AECOM and BG&E.
"This game-changing project, which is supporting 1,300 construction jobs, will significantly improve access around the airport and surrounding industrial areas, meaning businesses can get products to market more quickly and efficiently," Mr Briggs said.
WA Transport Minister Dean Nalder said reaching 60 per cent of the construction program marked a significant milestone for the Gateway WA Perth Airport and Freight Access Project.
"As the second half of the project advances, positive effects will be felt across the city as major elements of the upgrade are progressively opened to traffic. The improvements within the Kewdale Industrial Precinct almost finished, and four of the five new interchanges will come on stream before the end of the year.
"The completion of this central zone of the project will greatly improve the connectivity, reliability and safety of the one of the State's most important transport hubs."
Work on Gateway WA's major construction packages commenced in the third quarter of 2013. The project's completion date has been brought forward from early 2017, with the project team now aiming for a mid-2016 finish. Important construction milestones were achieved throughout 2014 including the first bridge beam installation for the Tonkin Highway/Leach Highway interchange.
The scope of the Gateway WA project includes the construction and upgrade of five main interchanges, widening Tonkin Highway to six lanes between Great Eastern Highway and Roe Highway and upgrading Leach Highway between Tonkin Highway and Orrong Road to expressway standard.
Photo: Aerial view of Tonkin Highway and Leach Highway interchange, January 2015 / Gateway WA.