Wednesday 19th Dec, 2018

$615m Gawler electrification deal signed

Gawler station. Photo: SA Government

Lendlease will electrify Adelaide’s Gawler line as far as Salisbury, under a $615 million contract announced January 18.

Stage 1 of the Gawler Rail Electrification Project will see the Gawler line electrified between Adelaide and Salisbury – the first 20 kilometres of the 40-kilometre line.

Lendlease will expand its NorthHub employment and training facility to deliver the project.

“This investment by the State Government will see a significant expansion of Adelaide’s electrified rail network, ensuring services between Adelaide and Salisbury are faster, cleaner and more frequent,” Lendlease engineering and services chief executive Craig Laslett said.

The state’s Labor Government says it could have announced the deal on December 14 last year, but was stalled by Liberal members of the Public Works Committee in charge of approving the project.

Early in January, transport and infrastructure minister Stephen Mullighan accused Liberal MP David Pisoni of misleading South Australians, when he told ABC Radio he couldn’t delay the project, despite allegedly doing just that.

“Despite receiving independent advice that his actions are holding up the project, David Pisoni is still refusing to allow the Public Works Committee to progress which would allow construction to start,” Mullighan said on January 11.

“This pathetic, political posturing by David Pisoni and the Liberals is putting jobs at risk.”

South Australians will head to the polls on March 17 in the 2018 state election.

With the Stage 1 deal signed, Mullighan said the state needs a funding commitment from the Federal Government to proceed with the second stage of the project, which will see the electrification extended to Gawler.

“Even with the contract signed and works to commence within weeks, a funding commitment by the Federal Government would allow us to extend to contract to deliver the entire project from Adelaide to Gawler and would support an extra 95 jobs a year during construction,” the minister said.

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