We all know how hard it is to find a park around O’Connell and The Parade, especially on a weekend. The state government’s most recent update about the tram system expansion could be the solution for locals wanting to get out for a bite at these popular strips.
Premier Jay Weatherill has officially announced a Labor election promise of extending Adelaide’s tram network into North Adelaide’s O’Connell St, and the Eastern Suburbs — up The Parade to Norwood Place shopping centre around George St.
The newest additions to the EastLink network follow the current $50M undertaking of extending the lines eastward from King William that has been frustrating motorists on North Terrace for the past six months. The development is part of a $2 billion infrastructure plan proposed by Labor ahead of the upcoming state elections.
The planned investment includes the purchase of 4 new trams to expand the capacity of the larger network, and according to the government, would support 145 new jobs in construction of the new lines.
Perhaps most significantly, the Norwood line extension seems to be a challenge to the incumbent local member and State opposition leader, Steven Marshall. Marshall has predictably dismissed the reality of the proposal, claiming, “I’ve heard that before, in fact I think I’ve heard it three or four times. They’re not going to ever deliver it.” Labor candidate Matt Loader has been nominated to challenge the narrowly contested electorate.
Construction of the two new lines are planned to commence in the 2018-19 financial year, and projected to take two years to complete, said Transport Minister Stephen Mulligan. Once finished, he expects them to bring commuters from the East and North every 10 minutes in and out of the CBD.
Image: Artist’s impression of the proposed extension of the tram line into Norwood. Source: State Government