« Last post by Barry Drive on Yesterday at 01:36:39 PM »
And - we have a tie. So it's time for a tie breaker vote.
ACT government signs suite of light rail stage 2 contractshttp://www.canberratimes.com.au/act-news/act-government-signs-suite-of-light-rail-stage-2-contracts-20170426-gvswkz.html
The ACT government has signed a series of contracts with consultants to design its second stage of light rail from the city to Woden, using many of the consultants it used on the first leg.
Ernst and Young has been appointed commercial adviser, including preparing the business case and economic analysis, market soundings, and advising on how to structure the contracts to deliver stage 2. The company also worked on the stage 1 business case, and was contracted for $2.3 million of work on stage 1 in the three years to June 2016.
Arup has been appointed technical adviser for stage 2, and its tasks include engineering design, traffic and access design, underground investigations, urban design, safety planning and planning approvals.
Arup, also technical adviser for stage 1, is one of the most highly paid light rail consultants date, winning contracts worth $7.6 million over the three years to June 2016.
Transport Minister Meegan Fitzharris was unable to provide the final costs of the latest tranche of contracts this week, with details still being signed off, but in November 2016 she said the contracts were together worth about $7 million, of a total $25 million to prepare for stage 2.
The route is expected to be finalised this year, with contracts signed before the 2020 election.
Turner and Townsend has been appointed to estimate costs for the 10km route to Woden, which is more complicated than the line from Gungahlin. It must cross Commonwealth Avenue bridge, and is to be wire-free over the bridge and through the parliamentary triangle.
Turner and Townsend, which also costed the Parramatta light rail line for the NSW government, appears to have been paid nearly $2 million to date for cost estimation work, as "constructability advisor", and assessing the tenders for stage 1.
An audit report last year detailed some of the negotiations between cost-estimator Turner and Townsend and the ACT government when Turner and Townsend initially the capital cost of stage 1 at $1.01 billion in 2014. The figure prompted a "value-engineering workshop" "to allow Turner and Townsend an opportunity to clarify elements of the design for their costing assumptions" and to refine the design to reduce costs, the auditor reported. Soon after, Turner and Townsend revised down the cost to $610 million, including scrapping $100 million of "owners' costs" and a $227 million contingency. Eventually, the construction contract was signed for $710 million.
Elton Consulting has been appointed as communications and engagement advisor. Elton, also involved in Sydney light rail, was contracted to do Canberra planning work in 2015-16, worth $220,000, according to annual reports. In 2015, Elton employed former deputy head of the ACT Land Development Agency Dan Stewart and its website boasts Mr Stewart's experience in light rail.
Sydney rail engineering consultancy SNC Lavalin Rail and Transit has been appointed as operations advisor, including deciding on the light rail vehicles. SNC Lavalin Rail was also operations consultant on stage 1, with contracts worth $2.2 million.
Veitch Lister Consulting will do transport modelling for the second stage, including calculating expected patronage. Veitch Lister worked on demand forecasting for stage 1 and has been contracted for about $400,000 of work to date.
Clayton Utz has been appointed as legal advisors and Sparke Helmore as probity advisor. Hudson Global, in charge of recruitment for stage 1, has also been given the recruitment task for stage 2.
Most of the contracts were tightly contested in the tender round, with the ACT government website listing nine separate bids for the cost-estimation contract won by Turner and Townsend. Four companies bid for the transport modelling contract, and four to be commercial advisor.
Six companies bid for the communications contract. Two companies bid be to technical advisor, but it appears SNC Lavalin Rail and Transit was the only formal bid for the operations management contract. Ten companies bid for the recruitment contract.
Names of Canberra's first 13 light rail stops revealed, next the designhttp://www.canberratimes.com.au/act-news/names-of-canberras-first-13-light-rail-stops-revealed-next-the-design-20170426-gvsk56.html
They've been immortalised in ink, in coffee cups and in cake but transport minister Meegan Fitzharris says Canberra's new light rail stops could be as iconic as the city's famous bus shelters.
The minister unveiled the latest "little milestone" in stage one of the city's light rail project - the names of the 13 light rail stops stretching from Gungahlin Place to Alinga Street in Civic.
The new light rail stops will be: Gungahlin Place, Manning Clark North, Mapleton Avenue, Nullarbor Avenue, Well Station Drive, EPIC and Racecourse, Phillip Avenue, Swinden Street, Dickson Interchange, Macarthur Avenue, Ipima Street, Eloura Street and Alinga Street.
And the next milestone in the project will be the design of the stops, which the minister hopes will be as distinctive as the 'bunker' bus shelters.
"[The design] will come out in the next couple of months so we'll have some designs for people to look at," Ms Fitzharris said.
"Obviously we've been working with Canberra Metro on those designs as well as NCA because the design of the stops, particularly on the spots they're responsible for, are very important to them as well so we'll have the final designs out for people to look at over the next couple of months as well."
Ms Fitzharris said the design will be "broadly similar" to the ones in the original artist's impressions but will be "much more developed".
"They've had a lot of input from local designers as well so they represent parts of the city people will be familiar with so they'll be pretty exciting for people to have a look at," Ms Fitzharris said.
Ms Fitzharris said stage one of light rail is on schedule, with work underway at every point along the rout.
The first piece of track to be laid in May or June and the first vehicle shells have gone into production in Spain.
Work is also underway to integrate stage one and two of the project "seamlessly".
At the Alinga Street stop will be a recharging facility for the trams, as stage two of the light rail has to be wire-free, Ms Fitzharris confirmed.
"Because we'd always planned for this to be a city-wide project we knew that anything beyond Alinga Street would require us to be wire free and that includes a Russell extension or across the lake so the capacity is within each of the vehicles to be wire free anyway and within the tracks itself," she said.
"My understanding [of the charging station] that it'd be no extra time, it sort of recharges as it goes, as in no extra time from the time it takes to stop and unload and load on passengers anyway so there's no additional time."
Work is also continuing on updating the bus network to make way for light rail.
Ms Fitzharris said there would be two bus network refreshes between now and this time next year.
"We don't want to be at the point where we are refreshing the whole network at the same time as we're starting up light rail so there'll probably be two points of network updates between now and the start of light rail so one this year with the introduction of new rapid services and one in the first quarter of 2018, although that date may be subject to change," Ms Fitzharris said.