SA’s Torrens to Darlington early works get underway

Artist’s impression of the Torrens to Darlington Project (T2D).

More than $85 million in preparatory early works are now underway on the $9.9 billion Torrens to Darlington (T2D) project in Adelaide, the final piece of South Australia’s 78-kilometre North-South Corridor.

The South Australian Government has selected a hybrid+ option to deliver the T2D project, using a combination of tunnels, lowered and ground-level motorways, as well as overpasses and underpasses at key intersections.

The latest phase of work follows announcement of the planned southern laydown area in Tonsley-Clovelly Park, from where two tunnel-boring machines will launch to excavate the twin three-lane Southern Tunnels.

The four-kilometre tunnel between Anzac Highway and Darlington is part of the stage one of the project.

When complete, around 60 per cent of the T2D Project will be comprised of underground tunnels, with the second stage construction between the River Torrens and Anzac Highway including a second tunnel.

Works have now started at the southern end of the project corridor around Clovelly Park and include the relocation of SA Power Networks (SAPN) cabling helping to clear the way for T2D’s Southern Tunnel launch site and staging area. Works to relocate Optus telecommunications services are also underway.

Federal Minister for Communications, Urban Infrastructure, Cities and the Arts,  Paul Fletcher, said these early enabling works would help T2D’s planned main construction to proceed smoothly.

“The Morrison Government has invested billions in the North-South Corridor – the most significant infrastructure project ever undertaken in the state – as part of its record $110 billion infrastructure investment pipeline, which is helping to drive the nation’s world-leading economic recovery,” Minister Fletcher said.

“When finished, this project will bypass 21 sets of traffic lights between the River Torrens and Darlington, with the journey taking on average 8 minutes, saving motorists up to 24 minutes in travel time.”

South Australia’s Minister for Infrastructure and Transport, Corey Wingard, said getting this work done early will help ensure the Torrens to Darlington main construction, especially the first stage of tunnelling, can start as scheduled in 2023.

“We know these utility services need to be relocated to make way for the tunnels, so we’re cracking on with that task now while we continue to finalise the Reference Design for the project,” Minister Wingard said.

“These works, which are part of a broader package of enabling works worth more than $85 million, are supporting 157 jobs and creating employment for more South Australians during the early phases of this important project.

“This is the biggest road infrastructure project in our state’s history, and we’re proud to be getting on with delivering it in consultation with the community and for the benefit of the people of South Australia.”

The T2D project team will be speaking face-to-face with local residents and businesses in coming months about what potential changes to their neighbourhoods might mean for them.

Once T2D is finished, South Australian motorists will be able to enjoy a 78 km non-stop motorway between Gawler and Old Noarlunga, which will bust congestion and drastically cut travel times.

A recently completed survey by the South Australian Government canvassing the views of about 3,600 people showed more than 75 per cent of respondents who frequently use South Road or live near the proposed T2D corridor have ”positive” sentiment towards the project.

Major construction of the Southern Tunnels is expected to commence in late 2023, pending relevant approvals, with the entire 10.5 km project expected to be completed in 2030.

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