The Western Australian government has issued an expression of interest for contractors tendering for the Tonkin Highway extension.
The planned project looks to extend the Tonkin 14km south to link up with the South Western Highway. This also includes upgrades to Thomas Road.
In a joint investment with the federal government, which has invested $768 million into the project, the WA government has committed $315 million.
Federal transport minister Catherine King welcomes the extension as a key piece of infrastructure.
“The federal government is pleased to be partnering with the Western Australian government to enhance Perth’s south-west corridor with the delivery of the Tonkin Highway extension and upgrades to Thomas Road, which will reduce traffic pressure and improve connectivity,” she says.
“The project forms part of a package of infrastructure works set to transform the Tonkin Highway corridor, providing a high standard north-south transport link from Muchea down to Mundijong.
“These include the upgrade between Collier Road and Great Eastern Highway – known as the Tonkin Highway Gap, the upgrade of the intersections south of Roe Highway at Hale, Welshpool and Kelvin roads and the Tonkin Highway – North Ellenbrook Interchange project.”
As a part of the project, surrounding roads will be connected to the Tonkin Highway. This will include grade separated interchanges at Thomas Road and Bishop Road and roundabouts at Orton Road, Mundijong Road and South Western Highway.
Underpasses will also be built at Abernethy Road and Shanley Road, as well as a bridge over Wright Road.
Thomas Road will be duplicated from Kargotich Road to Wungong South Road to address traffic congestion, improve road safety, and cater for the growing population east, north and south of Byford.
State transport minister Rita Saffioti says it is investment to a level that WA’s roads have rarely seen.
“This long-awaited southern extension of Tonkin Highway represents the largest investment this corridor has ever seen, and has been planned for several years, to ensure the project delivers maximum benefits for road users and the broader community,” she says.
“Extending Tonkin Highway will improve efficiency of truck movements and ensure heavy vehicles are diverted away from growing residential areas like Byford. This will enhance safety and improve the amenity of local communities.
“The project will complement the nearby METRONET Byford Rail Extension, METRONET Thomas Road Over Rail, and Thomas Road Safety Improvements between Kwinana Freeway and South Western Highway, to provide communities in our south with greater access to our transport network.”
The WA government estimates the project will create more than 2000 jobs during the construction phase.