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Late toll road opening to cost Leighton nearly $1m a day
29/06/2012 - Brisbane's Airport Link toll road is set to open one month late, which will cost its builders almost $1 million a day.
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Thiess John Holland (TJH), a subsidiary of construction giant Leighton Holdings, has given notice that the road should be fit for operation some time soon after July 27, subject to final inspections.
The 6.7 kilometre toll road was due to be completed in June.
TJH must pay the road's operator Brisconnections $973,973 for each day the project is not open past June 30, meaning the late opening will cost Leighton at least $26.3 million.
But that is a smaller cost than what could have been, with TJH recently reducing its daily liability to Brisconnections from $1.2 million.
Allowances have been made for the late delivery and the costs would not affect Leighton's profit guidance for 2012, Leighton chief executive Hamish Tyrwhitt said.
"Issuance of the notice of completion demonstrates that TJH has almost finished the project, which will be a good result for commuters, residents of the communities around the project and our shareholders," Tyrwhitt said in a statement.
Motorists will be able to use the Airport Link for free for the first four weeks of its operations, and motorists with an e-tag for any Australian toll road will get a further two months of free use.
The toll for cars travelling the full length of the road will begin at an introductory rate of $2.50 and gradually rise to the originally agreed amount of $4.90.
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