The Wellington Gateway Partnership, led by a unit of ASX-listed Leighton Holdings, is in the box seat to win the $908 billion contract to build the Transmission Gully road north of Wellington.
The consortium, made up of Leighton Contractors, HEB Construction, InfraRed Infrastructure General Partner, the Bank of Tokyo-Mitsubishi UFH and the Accident Compensation Corp, has entered preferred bidder negotiations with the New Zealand Transport Agency to build the 27 kilometre project as a public private partnership.
The contract is expected to be awarded by the middle of next year, and will see the winner design, build, finance, operate and maintain the road for 25 years after the expected five-year build. NZTA estimates the road will cost $908 million, the most expensive section of the $2.5 billion cost flagged for the entire 110 km Wellington Northern Corridor.
"This is one more important step in the procurement process, but there is more to be done before a PPP contract can be awarded for the project," chief executive Geoff Dangerfield said in a statement.
The rival bidder short-listed for the Transmission Gully project was Positive Connection, whose members are Fulton Hogan, Fletcher Building, Macquarie Group and the Morrison & Co-managed PIP Fund.