A report released today by the NSW Acting Auditor General has slammed the Baird Government’s Albert ‘Tibby’ Cotter Walkway as a grossly overpriced project without a justifiable reason to even exist.

The report found that Transport NSW and RMS were both unable to deliver economic or financial argument for even deciding to build the walkway. 

The report also states that the walkway’s 2015 deadline substantially added to the project’s cost, which is now projected to slug taxpayers $38 million. 

The walkway crosses over Anzac Parade and into Moore Park and nearby stadiums. 

Regardless of the lack of justification, in February 2014 the Government announced that the walkway’s timeline would be pushed forward to February 2015 to allow for the Cricket World Cup. 

This promise ignored existing timelines set for a December 2017 completion to allow for proper costing and planning. 

The walkway ended up being built without a final business case or a Gateway review required by the government’s own project assurance system. 

The rushed deadline also forced the tender process to be skipped and an existing relationship with a contractor was furthered to complete the project. The deadline added significantly to the contractor’s final fee. 

The Acting Auditor General’s report can be viewed here

Quotes attributable to Shadow Minister for Transport Ryan Park  

“It’s a pretty clear the Baird Government has botched the project when the Acting Auditor General slams them for a lack of planning, process and due diligence.”

“The Government has rushed a project through at the expense of the taxpayer. What’s worse is the project didn’t even need to exist.” 

“This is another example of a botched infrastructure project from the Coalition. We’ve seen Westconnex and Newcastle light rail blow out of budget – this is just another one to the list.”