The ACT government has pledged to honour its commitment to bring light rail to Woden, following the announcement construction contract signings have been delayed due to the coronavirus pandemic.
Minister for Transport Chris Steel, on Monday, said the government had intended to sign contracts for light rail stage 2 prior to the October election but due to the pandemic this may not be possible.
He said the government refused to rush into signing any contracts in the midst of an uncertain time but hoped contracts could be signed in the next six months.
A range of significant risks to the project had emerged due to the pandemic, Mr Steel said, however he believed construction was still on track to commence next financial year.
"A range of global supply chain risks have emerged during the pandemic," Mr Steel said.
"Whether it's the closure of the light rail vehicle manufacturing plant in Spain. Whether it's the internal border closures with Queensland, which means that workers from Queensland, from John Holland for example, need to go into self quarantine when they return to Queensland."
He added light rail stage 2 was due to be completed during a period when most major Australian cities had either heavy or light rail projects underway meaning heightened competition among major construction companies.
Stage 2 of light rail is due to be delivered in two sections, the first, stage 2A, runs from Alinga Street to Commonwealth Park.
There are concerns if the pandemic causes delays to stage 2A that will cause blowouts to the Woden section of the project.
Former Woden Valley Community Council president Fiona Carrick, who is running as an independent at the territory election, said the delays brought about by the pandemic should offer the government an opportunity to reconsider the rollout of stage 2.
She said the government should consider delivering stage 2 in one build, rather than an initial section to Commonwealth Park, known as stage 2A, and then a separate build of rail through to Woden.
Ms Carrick believed this provided a more efficient and cheaper alternative to minimise the impact on the budget and household rates.
She said the people of Woden Valley would also get greater benefit from light rail if stage 2 was extended to Southlands Mawson to access the shopping precinct, Marist, Melrose High School and small businesses in the Phillip Business District.
Considering the risk coronavirus posed to the future feasibility of the light rail, Ms Carrick said splitting stage 2 into two separate builds increased the risk that Woden might never receive the light rail.
While Mr Steel did not comment specifically on whether any changes to the rollout of stage 2 would be considered prior to contracts being entered into, he did reaffirm the government's commitment light rail to south Canberra.
"The ACT government is considering a range of ways to deliver the project in light of the current pandemic. We'll continue to work on those in negotiation with Canberra Metro to deliver the benefits we've seen from light rail stage one down to the southside," he said.
The Canberra Liberals' transport spokeswoman Candice Burch previously indicated the opposition would honour any contracts signed prior to the election should they form government.
However, she would not commit to completing stage 2 of the light rail project and called for greater transparency from the ACT government.