The Australian Capital Territory (ACT) has invited bids from construction companies for the A$288m ($284.3m) Majura Parkway project, which will provide an important north-south transport link connecting the national and Monaro Highways in Canberra, Australia.

The development will include the construction of an 11.5km-long dual carriageway to connect the two highways.

ACT chief minister and minister for territory and municipal services Katy Gallagher said qualified and experienced construction companies will have until 31 July 2012 to submit their bids.

"We are making an investment in Canberra’s future and, once completed in 2016, the Majura Parkway will make it easier for Canberrans to get around the city," Gallagher added.

"The Parkway’s final forward design took into account the feedback received from the public information sessions and stakeholder meetings conducted over recent months.

"A development application has now been submitted to the ACT’s planning and land authority and approval by the national capital authority has been sought. Both processes are expected to be finalised in the coming months."

Federal infrastructure and transport minister Anthony Albanese said: "Assessed and recommended by Infrastructure Australia, this new road is expected to generate long-term economic, social and environmental benefits worth almost $1b."

The federal and the ACT government will each contribute A$144m ($142.1m).

"This will play a significant role in improving the main national and regional freight route, and the ACT will also benefit from additional capacity in its road network," Leigh said.

The interested companies will have a briefing session about the further information on 5 June 2012 at Dame Pattie Menzies House in Dickson.