Preferred bidder announced for second tunnelling contract for Suburban Rail Loop

Monica Gameng   |   July 10, 2024
Suburban Rail Loop train (cr: Victoria's Big Build)

The transformational Suburban Rail Loop (SRL) development in Victoria has marked another major milestone with the announcement of a preferred bidder for the second tunnelling contract for SRL East. 

Terra Verde is set to build the 10-kilometre northern twin tunnels between Glen Waverley and Box Hill. The consortium is comprised of WeBuild, S.p.A, GS Engineering and Construction Australia, and Bouygues Construction Australia. 

Detailed negotiations are well underway, and the Tunnels North contract is due to be formally awarded later this year. 

“We promised Victorians we’d get on with building the Suburban Rail Loop, and that’s exactly what we’re doing,” Premier Jacinta Allan said. 

“This is an exciting milestone as we prepare for construction to begin on the tunnels between Glen Waverley and Box hill in 2026 – we're making huge progress and creating thousands of jobs to deliver this city-shaping project,” Minister for the Suburban Rail Loop Danny Pearson said. 

Meanwhile, piling works are underway on Whitehorse Road in Box Hill. Crews are now working to deliver a temporary bridge that will keep traffic flowing during the construction of SRL East. 

This new milestone builds on the awarding of the Tunnels South contract last year to Suburban Connect. The consortium has already commenced works including ground investigations and planning in preparation for tunnelling to begin in 2026. 

Other work contracts are yet to be awarded. The contract for the Linewide package – which will build the high-tech fleet of SRL trains, fit out the tunnels, install signalling, and operate and maintain the network – is expected to be awarded next year. Furthermore, two contracts for the construction of the six new underground stations will be awarded from 2026. 

The delivery of SRL East between Cheltenham and Box Hill is progressing well, with works already underway at all six station sites and on the stabling facility in Heatherton.

Planning for the neighbourhoods around each station is underway as well, with extensive community consultation informing structure planning for each site. Draft Structure Plans are set to go on public display later this year or early next year. 

“The Suburban Rail Loop is here to stay, and it will deliver better transport connections, more homes and jobs,” Member for Box Hill Paul Hamer said. 

“We are not wasting a day as we continue works at all six station sites across the Suburban Rail Loop,” Member for Ashwood Matt Fregon said. 

“SRL is powering ahead to cut congestion and get people to work, home or uni sooner,” Member for Glen Waverley John Mullahy said. 

The overall Suburban Rail Loop development will deliver a 90-kilometre orbital rail line that will link every major train service from the Frankston Line to the Werribee Line via Melbourne Airport, providing Victorians with a better connection to jobs, retail, education, health services and each other. 

The project will also deliver three transport superhubs at Clayton, Broadmeadows and Sunshine where regional passengers can connect to SRL. 

The Suburban Rail Loop is being built in four sections: 

  • SRL East – Cheltenham to Box Hill 
  • SRL North – Box Hill to Melbourne Airport 
  • SRL Airport – Melbourne Airport to Sunshine 
  • SRL West – Sunshine to Werribee 

The delivery of Suburban Rail Loop from Cheltenham to Melbourne Airport is expected to support up to 24,000 jobs. 

Source: Premier of Victoria – Media Centre; Victoria’s Big Build – Suburban Rail Loop (1, 2, 3

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Monica Gameng
As Felix's Marketing Assistant since 2015, Monica is responsible for researching and sharing new and progressing projects within the construction and mining sectors in Australia. It's no surprise that Monica has her finger on the pulse of Australian major projects given she has produced more than 1,000 posts. She truly is an industry expert.
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