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The director of the Gold Coast Rapid Transit Project says the organisation is nearly ready to call for expressions of interest from private firms keen to help finance, design and operate the city's light rail system.
Tim Poole has told a Gold Coast business luncheon the process will begin late this month.
He says the project team will provide the market with documentation setting out the requirements for a public-private partnership.
"They will be required to respond to that and then we will be endeavouring to select the best of those responses, put them in a short list and then ask them next year to provide a detailed financial and technical proposal for the design, finance and operation of the light rail system," he said.
The managing director of the Tourism and Transport Forum, Christopher Brown, says the project will improve commerce in the city, and the region is ready for a major light rail system.
"I think we'll see significant movement ... of people up the coast in a magnificent region of just unbridled growth of commerce in both tourism and other trade," he said.
"What we want to see is that community tapping into a much greater public transport platform.
"You just can't keep pumping more cars running basically from the Tweed to south of Brisbane."
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