Passengers boarded the G: for the first time today, enjoying free rides on the new light rail system between the Gold Coast University Hospital station in Southport and Broadbeach South station.
Queensland Transport and Main Roads Minister Scott Emerson, Federal Member for Moncrieff Steven Ciobo and Gold Coast Mayor Tom Tate thanked Gold Coast people for their patience during the two-year construction period for the $1.2 billion project.
“With the G20 and 2018 Commonwealth Games just around the corner, the Gold Coast is now in a good position to show off one of Queensland’s best holiday destinations,” Mr Emerson said.
“The light rail will give local residents far more than a world-class public transport network. Light rail has a proven track record for revitalising cities by connecting people and places, and attracting investment.”
Federal Member for Moncrieff Steven Ciobo said the Australian Government had invested $365 million in the $1.2 billion project.
“The Gold Coast Rapid Transit delivers a modern, integrated light rail system that helps meet the transport needs of Australia’s sixth largest city,” Mr Ciobo said.
“This project is a perfect example of a public-private partnership delivering the infrastructure this country needs for a more prosperous future.
“In peak periods, each light rail vehicle will be able to carry 309 passengers, which is the equivalent of 6 buses.”
Mayor Tom Tate said the project was Queensland’s first light rail system and the first for any regional city in Australia.
“It is an exciting time for the Gold Coast and I am confident this project will drive new investment and more local jobs. It is important for everybody to get behind the G:link and make public transport a part of everyday life,” Mr Tate said.
“I’m really excited about the opening and the future of this important piece of city-building infrastructure.”
The Queensland Government contributed $464 million to this project, the Australian Government contributed $365 million and the Gold Coast City Council provided $120 million to the project, with the GoldLinQ consortium also investing in the project.
The free light rail rides will run every seven and a half minutes between Southport and Broadbeach on Sunday 20 July 2014. Light rail services thereafter will run as per the GoldLinQ timetable from 5am to 11.50pm Monday to Thursday and 24 hours on Friday and Saturday.
Source: News Release Transport Minister Scott Emerson, 20 July 2014