Potential RiverCity class action a step closer

14 April 2011
A class action regarding Brisbane's ill-fated Clem7 tunnel has moved a step closer with national law firm Maurice Blackburn and Litigation Funder IMF today sending out information for participation in a potential class action.

Maurice Blackburn class action Principal Andrew Watson said people who bought stapled units in RiverCity Motorway Investment Trust and RiverCity Motorway Holding Trust, collectively known as RiverCity, may have a claim against Aecom, the company responsible for traffic modelling for the tunnel.

The tolled tunnel opened in mid-March 2010, and recent traffic flow through the tunnel has averaged 24,000 per day, compared to a forecast average of more than 90,000 per day.

The financial performance of the tunnel has been so disastrous that RiverCity was placed in Administration on 25 February 2011.

"Maurice Blackburn is investigating a claim against Aecom in relation to its traffic modelling for the Clem7 tunnel," Mr Watson said.

"Based on our investigations so far, we believe that Aecom left critical information out of its RiverCity Product Disclosure Statement when it failed to reveal earlier modelling it had performed for the Brisbane City Council which produced traffic volumes substantially below those in the Product Disclosure Statement.

"Aecom did the modelling for the council's Environmental Impact Study and forecast traffic volumes of 57,000 per day in 2011. This is way below its forecast of 90,676 within six months of operation in the Product Disclosure Statement and probably would have made the whole project uneconomic.

"We are also investigating whether Aecom's traffic forecasts were based on reasonable grounds, whether flawed data was used, or whether the alleged deception was more entrenched."

At this stage, the class action would be for anyone who bought RiverCity stapled units under the Product Disclosure Statement.

Litigation funder IMF Australia is supporting the potential class action.