Following a landslide election victory, Premier Daniel Andrews’s Labor government has released Victoria’s biggest ever road project out to market with interest sought for the primary package to be delivered under a PPP, and also a $200m early works package .
Under the availability PPP, the private sector will deliver the most complex elements of North East Link, including the construction of 6km of twin tunnel, submission of a concept design for aspects of North East Link and ongoing responsibility for operating and maintaining the entire North East Link corridor.
EoIs are due to the North East Link Authority by 10 May 2019, with a respondent member form required by 1 April. Victoria is to issue a supplement in February 2019. Financial close is expected in the third quarter of 2020.
The federal and state governments have both committed funding for the project.
The amount of state contributions is expected to be sized to target a total private finance requirement of no more than $5bn for the primary package during the development phase, taking into account the quantum of competitive private finance available in the market as well as other factors such as appropriate operational leverage and required security arrangements.
Victoria aims to maintain an appropriate level of private financing following the traffic ramp-up period, estimated to be around two to five years after road opening. The state may make a further contribution at this point. The authority will require fully financed proposals.
Project advisors include GHD, EY and Clayton Utz.
Contracts for the early works package will be signed towards the end of 2019.
Andrews said: “We said that we’d take this project to the election and let Victorians make up their mind – the people have spoken and North East Link starts today.”
The project's website is available here.