Main Roads Western Australia has awarded the construction contract of the Bunbury Outer Ring Road in Western Australia to Southwest Connex Alliance.

Southwest Connex Alliance is a joint venture (JV) of ACCIONA, NRW Contracting, and MACA Civil.

The A$852m ($611m) project includes the design and construction of 27km of four-lane dual carriageway.

The Australian Government has agreed to fund 80% of the project cost while the State Government of Western Australia (WA) will be contributing the remaining 20% of the amount.

Once completed, the road project is expected to save commuter travel time by approximately 15 minutes.

In addition, the 27km road stretch will create an alternative route to Bunbury, which is said to be the third-largest city in WA. It will also establish a connection with different highways.

The Outer Ring Road is expected to improve access to Bunbury Port, further supporting Great Bunbury’s position as a regional industrial hub for the southwest region.

The project will also see the construction of safe rail and river crossings, as well as 20km of new and upgraded local government roads.

Construction work at the site is expected to begin next year after all the required environmental and heritage approvals have been obtained.

Last September, a consortium of Acciona, Plenary Group and Cintra opened Toowoomba Second Range Crossing (TSRC) in Queensland, Australia, following a €1.1bn investment.

The Toowoomba crossing is claimed to be the largest road project undertaken in Queensland. The concession for the dual carriageway covers 25 years.

It stretches across the Great Dividing Range, which runs roughly parallel to the country’s east coast for 3,700km.