ACCIONA, together with its partners Plenary Group and Cintra Infraestructuras, has inaugurated the final section of the Toowomba Second Range Crossing in the Australian state of Queensland. The motorway is now completely open to traffic, and has received an associated investment of 1.6 billion Australian dollars (around 1.1 billion euros).
The event was attended by Australia's deputy prime minister and minister for Infrastructure, Transport and Regional Development, Michael McCormack, and Queensland's minister for Transport and Roads, Mark Bailey. McCormack said the Toowoomba crossing "is a strategic link in Australia's national freight transport network", while Bailey highlighted the project's positive impact on the local economy, and the security benefits it provides to its residents.
In July 2015, the Nexus consortium comprising ACCIONA, Plenary and Cintra was selected for the design, construction, financing, operation and maintenance of the Toowoomba crossing, the largest road project in the state of Queensland. The financial close took place in August of the same year. ACCIONA and Ferrovial Agroman were in charge of the design and construction. Broadspectrum will be in charge of its operation and maintenance. The concession covers 25 years.
The Toowoomba Second Range Crossing is 41 kilometers long and will improve the region’s traffic flow by reducing heavy vehicle circulation in the city center. The first section of the Toowoomba bypass was opened in December 2018.
The Toowoomba Crossing stretches across the Great Dividing Range, which runs roughly parallel to the country's east coast for 3,700 kilometers. Users of the Second Range Crossing will cover the 500 meter difference in altitude between connection roads on slopes with gradients of no more than 6.5%, avoiding the steeper 10% level deviations and the 18 traffic lights of the existing road, which crossed the city. This infrastructure will make it possible to reduce the travelling time of heavy vehicles on the East-West corridor by around 40 minutes.
Among its technical highlights are an 800-meter viaduct over a railway line, and a mountain cutting that, by avoiding the alternative of a tunnel, will allow the circulation of heavy vehicles or those transporting hazardous cargo.
The Toowoomba project has been recognized with “The Best Road Deal for the Asia Pacific 2015" award granted by the IJ Global Project Finance and Infrastructure Journal and the Silver Award for the Best Transport Project of the Partnerships Bulletin PPP Awards.
This project marks a new milestone in ACCIONA's activities in Australia, where the company began operations in 2002. The group is currently carrying out the Sydney Light Rail and the level crossing removal scheme in the state of Victoria. The company also operates the Mundaring water treatment plant and the Adelaide desalination plant and is building the Kwinana waste to energy plant in Perth. Through its Energy division, ACCIONA has four operational wind farms in Australia with a total of 435 MW installed and is currently building the Mortlake South wind farm (157 MW).