Real cost of WestConnex hits $45.3 billion and rising

New research has identified $28.5 billion worth of extra costs attached to the NSW Government’s WestConnex road project, bringing the expected cost to a staggering $45.3 billion.

We revealed today that dozens of publically funded road upgrades needed to accommodate the toll road, including the Beaches Link and Southern Connector. 

Every extension of the toll network, every exit and every entrance associated with WestConnex generates hundreds of millions of dollars of publicly funded road upgrades required to funnel traffic to the toll way, and to take traffic from it.

Extra costs

Cost/Estimate

Approaches and exits lane reconfigurations along M4

$75,000,000

Sydney Airport travelling East

$27,650,000

Sydney Airport travelling North

$8,500,000

Sydney Airport travelling West

$9,300,000

Sydney Airport/Port Gateway

$2,500,000,000

Cross city link (Euston Road – Anzac Parade)

$1,200,000,000

Flow on intersection and local road upgrades

$20,000,000

Princes Hwy upgrades following St Peters Interchange.

$100,000,000

Probable requirement for Gardeners Rd

$400,000,000

Upgrade Western Distributor connections to cope with influx from Anzac Bridge, following Rozelle Interchange.

$1,000,000,000

Iron Cove Link (expectation above estimate)

$500,000,000

Upgrade all intersections, alignments, traffic management to Iron Cove Bridge, plus all approaches to Rozelle interchange on western side

$1,400,000,000

Western Harbour Tunnel

$9,000,000,000

Beaches Link

$5,300,000,000

Southern Connector

$6,800,000,000

Total

$28,500,000,000


Just one exit from WestConnex in St Peters, for example, will require more than one billion dollars of publicly funded road upgrades to manage the extra 30,000 cars that will pour into the area daily. 

The Government needs to reveal the true cost of WestConnex. The fact is they are hiding the endless cost blowouts of a project said to cost $10 billion in 2012, then $16.8 billion in 2016, when in actual fact the true cost is more than four and a half times that amount.

This level of funding could mean NSW won’t be able to afford any significant transport projects for decades to come and all for a project that everyone knows won’t solve Sydney’s congestion.

Its own business case shows most users will save less than five minutes and that the road network serving the toll road and some sections of tunnel will reach capacity as soon as 2031, only eight years after completion.

For western Sydney commuters, an overwhelming 89 per cent travel to the city on overcrowded public transport – what they need is more frequent and reliable public transport, not expensive toll roads that will cost them hundreds of dollars to use.

For the cost of this toll network we could have the Sydney West Metro and a cross-regional rail line from Liverpool through the new Badgerys Creek Airport and connecting to Parramatta.

It is shocking that seemingly limitless billions of taxpayer funds are being funnelled into this project with no questions asked and despite strong criticism of the project by the NSW Auditor General, Infrastructure Australia and the Federal Auditor General.

Traffic congestion costs Sydney $6.1 billion a year and that’s projected to double by 2031 – as Australia’s economic powerhouse, we need a vision for transport that will solve our city’s transport problems, not create new ones.