16 November 2022

Tender out for promised duplication of Athllon Drive

| Lottie Twyford
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sign on side of Athllon Drive

Upgrading Athllon Drive was promised by ACT Labor in the lead-up to the 2020 election and Federal Government funding has since been secured. Photo: Google Maps.

A tender has just been released for the duplication of the busy stretch of Athllon Drive between Drakeford Drive and Sulwood Drive in Tuggeranong.

It’s the second part of a two-phase project to upgrade a three-kilometre stretch of the road.

The government says the southern stretch is one of the most-used pieces of transport infrastructure in all of Canberra’s south, with more than 14,000 vehicles travelling it each day and 2000 in each peak period alone.

There have been more than 900 accidents on the road between 2013 and 2019.

Upgrades to the road include the duplication and addition of new bus stops, intersection improvements and a new pedestrian underpass at Sulwood Drive.

These works were committed to by ACT Labor in the lead-up to the 2020 election.

Chris Steel

Minister for Transport and City Services Chris Steel said the government had identified the Athllon Drive corridor as crucial as the city grows. Photo: Lottie Twyford.

In 2020, Transport Minister Chris Steel said the project was expected to cost up to $75 million and would likely be completed in 2025.

Firmer details about cost and timelines would be figured out through the tender process, a spokesperson for the government said.

Mr Steel said the road had been flagged in the government’s infrastructure priorities for Tuggeranong as “a crucial transport corridor” for motor vehicles, public transport and active travel.

“This investment in our infrastructure program will enable thousands of jobs from the conception stages through to planning, design and construction,” he said.

Pressure on Athllon Drive is increasing due to new developments in Greenway and around Woden.

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In its pre-election Budget earlier this year, the Morrison Government agreed to jointly fund upgrades to the road.

It committed $46.7 million to the project in March this year as part of an overall infrastructure funding package for the Territory to the value of $51 million.

Concept designs for this southern section of the project, and the northern section between Shea Street and Melrose Drive in Phillip, were released in August 2020.

concept design of roads

A concept design of the southern end of the Athllon Drive duplication. Image: ACT Government.

Consultation is expected to commence with local residents and community stakeholders in late 2023. The government is seeking views on proposed upgrades to intersections, the public transport and active travel components, and landscaping.

The full duplication is expected to cut at least two minutes off travel times for morning commuters on R4 and R5 bus services.

Other improvements are forecast for bike riders who will be able to use the Sulwood Drive underpass to travel between Tuggeranong and the city.

Construction was expected to take around three years, Mr Steel said in 2020.

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The Athllon Drive duplication is one of two major road infrastructure projects forecast for Tuggeranong in the recently released draft district strategy for the region, the other being upgrades to the Monaro Highway.

Duplicating this road has been bandied around since 2012 when then-ACT Opposition Leader Zed Seselja promised it if elected.

Further information and updates on the project are available from City Services.

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William Newby8:00 pm 17 Nov 22

Didn’t know the ACT still did tenders a lot of large,ish projects seem to have just been given out recently with some companies unaware of the potential work.
The way our local Gov staff manage contracts it will be a hot mess, tender will go to the cheapest, say $74.9m complying tender.
ACT Gov will poorly administer it with its most competent stooges, end result will be $150m cost.
You could easily say what a negative comment to make but based on history this is exactly what will happen here.

Yes the Long Lived sign announcing the duplication of Athlonn Dr reminds me of old long gone NCDC signs about duplicating Erindale Dr near Monash and Sulwood Drive between Kambah and Mt Taylor.

You can still see the graded area for the roads on Google satellite maps and sometimes you see cement support or pylon bases where the preparation had commenced.

Then along came self government in the late 80s and a whole lot of infrastructure commitments for Tuggeranong stopped dead in their tracks. Canberra infrastructure suddenly became political decisions based on ACT electorates and vote getting.

This was mentioned at the 2016 election.
Prior to the last fed election: this was to head to detailed design in mid 2022.
After the election it basically said they were waiting for the tram to come to tuggeranong.
Now the status is there will be consultation in Tuggeranong just prior to 2024 election. The money allocated went to raising London circuit but then Barr got called out for it.

Victor Lustig only sold the Eiffel tower twice. Seems were getting sold the duplication 3 or 4 times.

Sorry, but these duplication signs were erected well before the 2020 election. Why is consultation occurring in late 2023? Just get on with the consultation now and build the road in 2023.

Like the “new roads coming signs on the Monara Highway – erected years ago

Same sign on William Hovell must be approaching 3 to 4 years

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