Parramatta Light Rail Contracts To Be Announced Within Weeks
Contracts to build and operate the long promised light rail in Parramatta will soon be awarded.
The NSW state government says they don't want to repeat the mistakes seen with the CBD project, but small businesses are still worried about the impact.
When Dujuan Fahuer committed to opening a restaurant along Parramatta's famous eat street, she didn't know about government plans to build a light rail out the front.
Now, almost a million dollars later and having only opened her doors to customers yesterday, the impact of the project on her business is weighing heavily on her mind.
"I'm very worried that it will take a very long time and will slowly drag down the business of the whole street," Fahuer told 10 News First on Thursday.
But the government insists it has learnt its lessons, following the over-time and over-budget nightmare in the city construction.
"We've structured this one a little bit differently in so far as there will be multiple contracts and of the course the government will deal directly with utility companies in this instance," Transport Minister Andrew Constance said.
Early works on the project are already underway at the stabling yards to decontaminate the site.
While construction on stage one connecting Westmead to Carlingford will start next year, businesses have been promised that work along Church Street won't start until 2020.
"That gives business enough time to prepare for construction but also gives us time to work with them," Program Director Tim Poole said.
10 News first understands the winning contractors to build and operate stage one of the project will be announced in the next fortnight.
It comes as the government remains confident that its current legal dispute with the builder of the CBD light rail, will not be repeated in Parramatta.
Member for Parramatta Geoff Lee said they were managing the project very differently.
"I can guarantee people this project's going to run on time and to budget," Lee said.
Because the last thing this government needs is another bungled light rail project.
"The future of the street is brilliant," Fahuer told 10 News First.
"But will we last until the future, that's the question".
READ MORE: Credit Cards Now Accepted On NSW Trains
Featured Image: AAP