Modernising road maintenance
Friday, 12 April 2019
The Marshall Government will be extending its 20-year partnership with industry to modernise South Australia’s approach to maintaining our road network as announced in last year’s State Budget.
Currently, about 60 per cent of the annual road maintenance budget is delivered by industry through external contracts.
The State Government will soon release a tender for the maintenance of the Department of Planning, Transport and Infrastructure’s entire
23,000-kilometre road network (14,000km sealed, 9,000km unsealed) – a move
expected to save SA taxpayers up to $9 million a year from 2021/22.
“By partnering with industry, we will be able to keep pace with increasing demands of maintaining South Australia’s road network,” said Treasurer Lucas.
“The Marshall Government wants to continue to improve South
Australia’s roads and by further capitalising on the expertise and efficiency
of industry we can better achieve that goal.
“Through this expertise and efficiency, we will also be able to save South Australian taxpayers up to $9 million each year from 2021/2022.
“Proposed contracts to maintain these roads will see the State divided into four zones – Adelaide metropolitan, Regional South, Regional North and Outback.
“Having four dedicated areas will allow us to leverage the expertise of road maintenance contractors and allow them to focus on providing the best possible outcomes for their area.
“Grouping similar roads types within these four zones with provide further efficiencies for potential contractors to help save taxpayer dollars.
“A key priority is to provide road users with reliable networks to ensure efficient and safe journeys and the Government intends to work with contractors to deliver improved services with greater innovation.
“The opening of road maintenance activities across the State to competitive tendering will also attract new investment, support local employment and local industries.
“The approach to road maintenance will continue to have a strong focus on local job opportunities.
“The proposed contracts will include requirements to sub-contract to local small and medium businesses as well as the employment of trainees and apprentices.
“It’s important to reiterate that everyone who currently has a job with the department, and wants a job when these contracts start, will have a job.”
The initial contract term is proposed to be for seven years with an option to renew for a further six years (3+3) subject to the contractors meeting performance standards linked to levels of service and performance.
DPTI will be consulting with its workforce and relevant unions regarding the proposed future model for road maintenance to ensure they are best placed to take up opportunities under the new road maintenance contracts, either with the Department or with successful contractors.
The tender process will begin in April 2019 and is expected to be completed by mid-2020, with the intention of having new arrangements in place by the end of 2020.