THE North West Rail Link's tunnelling contract has attracted international interest. Expressions of interest were called for building 15.5 kilometre tunnels between Bella Vista and Epping last Friday.
Transport minister Gladys Berejiklian said the project had attracted interest from companies across Australia, the United Kingdom, Spain, China and Italy — over 320 people registered for an industry briefing on the project last week.
"This will be the biggest project and biggest and longest tunnel in our state's history and again the biggest project since the Sydney Harbour Bridge," Ms Berejiklian told a press conference at Castle Hill RSL Club last week. "This is a project that will change the way we have public transport not just in our city but our state."
Early building work on the project is due to start later this year and the first tunnel-boring machines are expected to be in the ground by 2014.
The state government recently announced major changes to the project with the line no longer to go direct into the city and the line's private operation. Its three biggest contracts are for tunnelling, surface-building works and rail systems, trains and operations.