Main Roads’ biggest road project, the $1.12 billion Northlink WA, achieved a major milestone yesterday when ground was broken on its central section between Reid Highway and Ellenbrook.
First referred to as the Swan Valley Bypass, then Perth to Darwin Highway and finally Northlink WA, the project is scheduled to link Perth Airport and Muchea by mid-2019.
A thousand jobs are expected to be created during construction, which is being funded by both the State and the Commonwealth and carried out by a joint venture between Laing O’Rourke Construction and BGC Contracting.
Federal Minister for Social Services and Pearce MHR Christian Porter said many more jobs would be created on new industrial land along the route. “The land essentially becomes a hub for a range of industries so warehousing, transport and a range of other industries have either already purchased land there to build on, or are planning to do so,” he said.
The three-stage project began with the southern section, along Tonkin Highway from Guildford Road to Reid Highway, last year.
State Transport Minister Rita Saffioti said there would be enormous traffic-congestion savings from the project, which is estimated to attract 80 per cent of heavy vehicles from Great Northern Highway.
Rounding out a State Government focus on the Swan Valley yesterday, Tourism Minister Paul Papalia announced a coordinated effort from Tourism WA, the City of Swan, local businesses and operators to better promote the region.
“We’ve committed $200,000 a year every year for four years towards a tourism strategy,” he said.