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SIMON Corbell says construction on stage one of Canberra’s light rail project will start in May or June this year.
“As part of the process of building light rail, a number of significant early works need to be undertaken on the route in the early stages of construction,” Simon said.
“Laying the actual tracks is just one part of the construction process. There are equally critical elements that need to be undertaken before that can happen and after that is complete.
“Construction is scheduled to begin in mid-2016 following completion of negotiations and contract finalisation with the preferred consortium Canberra Metro. The first stages of construction includes critical preparatory and preliminary work activities including earthworks, utility relocation, road widening, ordering of light rail vehicles, rail accreditation and survey works.
“Prior to work commencing on the track, site preparation of construction compounds and the depot also need to be completed in order to ensure safe and smooth construction operation.
“Many of these initial stages of construction won’t be immediately visible, but this significant work will nonetheless be taking place.
“They are critical aspects to the infrastructure of light rail, not just for construction but also to ensure a safe working environment.
“Highly visible aspects of the building of the light rail alignment, including tracks and power infrastructure, are scheduled to begin in October once the critical early works are completed.
“These early works taking place are specific to the light rail project and are critical to its completion.
“If the Canberra Liberals are allowed to follow through on their reckless threats to tear up light rail contract all of this work will have been done for nothing and they will be writing a blank cheque to dismantle a project that is of great benefit to the whole of the ACT.”