State Government demands answers on tram extension

The new State Government is demanding answers and will order a review into the North Terrace tram extension project to investigate continual project delays and cost overruns.

“The new State Government has inherited this mess from Labor and we’re fed up with the continual delays and the cost blowout,” Minister for Transport, Infrastructure and Local Government Stephan Knoll said.

“The initial project was costed at $70 million before Labor threw another $10 million at it so they could cut a ribbon before the state election in March.

“Last year there was public advice that these trams would be up and running by the end of January.

“Then Labor said trams would be running before the election in March.

“My latest advice is that passenger services won’t commence until the middle of July.

“Enough is enough. I’ll be demanding answers from the contractors and want a thorough review into why this project is likely to be delivered around six months late.

“South Australians have a right to know how their money has been spent and why this project has been pushed back by months.

“It is absolutely unacceptable that it’s going to take around 12 months to lay one kilometre of tram track and get passenger services up and running.

“We will be demanding to know how Labor effectively managed to make $10 million of taxpayers’ money disappear.

“South Australians, especially residents, workers, students and others who want to use this service, are frustrated by the continual delays and traffic issues associated with this project and so is the new government.

“However, our priority is that this project is delivered safely.

“The new State Government won’t be rushing this project which could potentially compromise passenger safety and that of road users.

“When it comes to big infrastructure projects, I think the public can accept that issues will arise along the way, but the delays and problems we’ve seen on this project just don’t pass the pub test.”