Oh My! The O-Bahn Tunnel Is O-P-E-N!

Off We Go Then...

Sean Maynard

10 December 2017

Sean Maynard

Article heading image for Oh My! The O-Bahn Tunnel Is O-P-E-N!

It's open!


After two years of disruptions, delays and no doubt, headaches, Adelaide's new O-Bahn Tunnel is all set to take its first passengers.

A handful of services will begin using it but rest assured, the State Government says every O-Bahn bus will take Adelaide's new "tube" by next weekend.


For those curious about the numbers, $160 million buys you a 670-metre tunnel from Hackney Road to Grenfell Street.

More than 30,000 passengers will be whisked through it each weekday, saving a few minutes off the average journey.

Better than nothing right?

Officials are expecting they'll need only "hours" to sort out any teething problems.

"All of the systems that have been installed ... will be under intense scrutiny during those first services," said Transport Minister Stephen Mullighan.

"We've got to make sure that we've got the calibration of the traffic lights and the traffic systems correct."

The 'tunnel' during construction

While there was plenty of cash to pay for it, there was next to nothing to upgrade the corridor at the end of the tunnel - Grenfell and Currie Streets.

It's looking a little sick and sorry from a patchwork of "touch ups" over the years.

"It's not good enough simply to patch the bitumen every time we see a pothole or a dip in the road caused by the buses," said Shadow Transport spokesman David Pisoni.

The State Government says it's knocking on the Adelaide City Council's door to see if there's any money in its road maintenance budget to fix it.

If not, that light at the end of the O-Bahn tunnel could mean a bumpy end to an otherwise slick ride for commuters that could take years to sort out.


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