CityLink drops $200K toll daily

Continuing technical difficulties with systems at the new CityLink toll road have cost its developer, Transurban, more than $10 million in lost revenue, and a reprieve is not likely in the short term.

The Melbourne toll road opened on August 15, and while the integrated tolling system isn't working, Transurban loses roughly $200,000 per day.

The tolling system is still under final commissioning stage and experiencing problems with the mailhouse interface and report writing functions.

According to Transurban public affairs spokesman, Andrew Manton, the mailhouse interface with the toll computer is generating problems with invoices and statements. There are also a "couple of reports not yet working as well as they should" with the back-end financial system.

"These are not considered major issues," Manton said.

However, these minor issues are costing Transurban about $200,000 each day the toll is not operational.

The figures could run even higher as Transurban is deliberately underestimating demand. "We expect traffic when the toll system is operational to be less than the current volume as people will have to pay a toll," Manton said.

Although the project grows long in the tooth, Manton could not guarantee a date for an operational toll system.

"This is software development," he said. "It's a bit unpredictable."

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