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Department of Infrastructure and Regional Development

Building Our Transport Future in Queensland

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Transport and Regional Services Portfolio

TRS4/Budget 10th May 2005

The Australian Government will spend $415.7 million on Queensland's land transport system in 2005-06, with funding confirmed for important road projects in Gympie, Gladstone, Townsville and Tully, south of Cairns.

The Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Transport and Regional Services, John Anderson, and the Minister for Local Government, Territories and Roads, Jim Lloyd, made the announcement today.

"The Budget confirms the Government's election promise to provide $35.0 million, $4.2 million in 2005-06, to widen the Bruce Highway through Gympie to four lanes and undertake major safety upgrades at its key intersections, including Monkland Street and Excelsior Road," Mr Anderson said.

"In Gladstone, the Government is spending $3.0 million to meet half the cost of the new Callemondah overpass, $2.0 million in 2005-06, which will complete an effective western bypass of the city. The overpass is expected to be completed by December this year.

"The Government will spend $5.0 million in 2005-06 to get planning underway for the Townsville ring road, which will connect the Douglas Arterial Road to the Bruce Highway north of Townsville. It will enable heavy vehicles to bypass the city, reducing traffic and congestion in the suburbs of Vincent, Heatly, Cranbrook, Aitkenvale and Mount Louisa. We have committed $40.0 million to the project over the next three years.

"We have committed $80.0 million ($2.9 million in 2005-06) to meet the full cost of flood-proofing the Bruce Highway south of Tully. The 2005-06 funding will enable Main Roads Queensland to investigate the hydrology of the floodplain and explore road construction options," Mr Anderson said.

The Minister for Local Government, Territories and Roads, Jim Lloyd, said the Budget confirmed the Government's commitment in the AusLink White Paper to allocate $627.0 million to urban links in Brisbane, and an additional $196.0 million to widen the Caboolture Motorway.

"The funds for the Brisbane urban links will be allocated according to the priorities identified in a 10-year strategic investment plan that is being developed jointly by the Australian and Queensland governments," Mr Lloyd said.

"Last year, the Government obtained the cooperation of Queensland to establish an independent study into the potential northern corridor for the Ipswich Motorway between Dinmore and Gailes. We are now considering the final report from the study.

"In the meantime, the Government will spend $12.3 million in 2005-06 to continue safety works on the motorway. We have also committed $160.0 million over five years, $10.0 million in 2005-06, to build a new interchange between the Ipswich and Logan motorways," Mr Lloyd said.

Mr Anderson said the 2005-06 funding for the Government's AusLink Investment Programme projects would be available on the condition that the Queensland Government signed the AusLink bilateral agreement. The AusLink Investment Programme projects account for $248.3 million of the $415.7 million in land transport spending in Queensland announced in this Budget.

The condition will not affect the AusLink Roads to Recovery Programme, including its Strategic Regional Programme and funding for unincorporated areas, the AusLink Black Spot Programme or untied local road grants.

"The AusLink agreement sets out a new approach to land transport planning and funding. We have to plan our transport system better, because it is the only way that Australia will be able to handle the growing traffic on our roads and railways.

"Taxpayers will also get better value for their road funding dollars under the agreement, because it includes the National Code of Conduct for the Construction Sector - a best-practice approach to workplace relations that will increase the sector's productivity."

"The AusLink agreement is the key to building the transport future of Queensland. I urge the state government to agree to it immediately, so the benefits of our 2005-06 funding can start to flow from the beginning of the financial year."

Strategic Regional Programme

Mr Lloyd said the Budget confirmed the Government's election commitment to fund five projects in Queensland under the AusLink Strategic Regional Programme. He said the projects were:

  • $125,000 in 2005-06 for safety improvements to the Bribie Island Road;
  • $0.8 million in 2005-06 to upgrade River Heads Road at Hervey Bay, the stepping-off point for Fraser Island;
  • $0.6 million ($0.5 million in 2005-06) to realign a section of Tablelands Road, between Bundaberg and Agnes Water;
  • $0.5 million in 2005-06 to help build a new bridge serving the Russett Park community near Kuranda; and
  • $1.0 million in 2005-06 as part of the Government $10.0 million commitment to the Outback Highway, which will link Laverton in Western Australia with Winton in Queensland, via Alice Springs.

Upgrading local roads

Mr Lloyd said that Queensland councils would receive $62.5 million in 2005-06 from the AusLink Roads to Recovery programme and $93.1 million in untied local road grants.

"The Budget confirms that we are spending $1.35 billion on extending the Roads to Recovery Programme until 2008-09. It is a vital funding injection that councils need to maintain their road systems," Mr Lloyd said.

Saving more lives through the AusLink Black Spot Programme

The Budget confirms that the Australian Government has delivered on its election commitment to extend the AusLink Black Spot Programme until June 2008. The programme provides funding to improve dangerous sections of our roads.

"The Government will spend an extra $45.0 million a year on the programme in 2006 07 and 2007-08. The Budget already includes $45.0 million for the programme in 2005-06," Mr Lloyd said.

"Queensland will receive $8.9 million from the programme in 2005-06, which will be directed to fixing about 75 priority crash locations. It is a key part of the national strategy to reduce Australia's road fatality rate by 40 per cent by 2010."

A detailed factsheet on the Australian Government's land transport projects in Queensland is attached.

 

Media contacts:
Paul Chamberlin Mr Anderson's office 02 6277 7680 / 0419 233 989
Fiona Telford Mr Lloyd's office 02 6277 7060 / 0407 908 504

 

QUEENSLAND

AUSLINK INVESTMENT PROJECTS1

Brisbane Urban Links

The Government has allocated $627.0 million to 2008-09 ($30.8 million in 2005-06) to build better road links in Brisbane and south-east Queensland. It will be allocated according to the priorities identified in a 10-year strategic investment plan that is being developed jointly by the Australian and Queensland governments.

Ipswich Motorway

The Ipswich Motorway is particularly important to both the Australian and Queensland governments. Last year, the Australian Government obtained the cooperation of Queensland to establish an independent study into the potential northern corridor for the motorway between Dinmore and Gailes. The outcome of the study is now being considered.

The Government will spend $12.3 million in 2005-06 to continue safety works on the motorway, and $10.0 million in 2005-06 on the interchange between the Ipswich and Logan Motorways at Gailes. The Government has committed $160.0 million to the interchange over five years.

Brisbane Urban Corridor

The Brisbane Urban Corridor in the AusLink Network consists of Granard Road, Riawena Road, Kessels Road and Mt Gravatt-Capalaba Road on the south side of the city.

The Government is implementing the recommendations of a recent study into the safety and efficiency of the Brisbane Urban Corridor, which will divert heavy vehicles from the corridor, especially at night.

  • The Government is funding a 12-month trial of removing the tolls on the Logan Motorway and the Gateway Motorway extension for heavy trucks between 10pm and 5am. The Government has budgeted $0.9 million for the trial in 2005-06;
  • Specially-designed cameras will monitor heavy vehicles on the Brisbane Urban Corridor, the Logan Motorway, the Gateway Motorway extension and the Ipswich Motorway. The cameras will help governments plan for the city's future infrastructure needs;
  • The Government has budgeted $2.2 million in 2005-06 for improved pedestrian crossings, taxi and bus stops at the intersection of Troughton and Kessels Roads, noise reduction measures on the northern side of Riawena Road and up to five pedestrian refuges in the median strip along Mt Gravatt-Capalaba Road;
  • Funds have also been committed to investigate a major interchange involving flyovers and ramps at the intersection of Mains Road and Kessels Road at Macgregor;

TransApex tunnel study

The Government contributed $2.0 million in 2004-05 to the prefeasibility study for the Brisbane TransApex tunnel project, in line with its election commitment.

Caboolture Motorway widening

The Government has committed $196.0 million under AusLink to complete the widening of the Caboolture Motorway to six lanes. The Government will spend $38.0 million on the widening project in 2005-06.

The next stage is widening the motorway to six lanes between Boundary Road and Uhlmann Road, the connection to Morayfield. It is scheduled to be completed by mid-2007. Meanwhile, planning is being undertaken for the duplication of the motorway between Uhlmann Road and the Caboolture North bypass.

Tugun bypass

The Australian Government will provide $120.0 million of the $360.0 million cost of the Tugun bypass, which will run to the west of the Gold Coast Airport and through a 400 metre tunnel. The Queensland Government has agreed to meet the rest of the cost of the project.

The Government's funding is allocated in 2006-07 and 2007-08, because construction is not expected to begin until mid-2006. The bypass should be complete and open to traffic in 2008.

Bruce Highway

Black Mountain Road intersection

The Government has committed $5.8 million ($0.8 million in 2005-06, with the remainder in 2006-07) for safety works at the Black Mountain Road intersection near Pomona. Additional road reconstruction is also planned.

Bruce Highway duplication through Gympie

The Government is providing $35.0 million over four years ($4.2 million in 2005-06) to widen the Bruce Highway through Gympie to four lanes and undertake major safety upgrades at key intersections. The works will address the immediate safety and congestion issues along the highway at Gympie.

Meanwhile, independent consultants Arup are conducting a strategic planning study of the highway from Cooroy to Curra. It will identify the best corridor for the highway in the long term, including a bypass of Gympie.

Bruce Highway/Isis Highway interchange, Apple Tree Creek

The Government is providing $6.0 million, $3.4 million in 2005-06, to upgrade the interchange between the Bruce Highway and the Isis Highway at Apple Tree Creek, north of Childers. The project, which involves a flyover and associated intersection changes, will make the intersection safer and reconfigure the highway alignment to favour the north-south flow of vehicles on the Bruce Highway. The work is expected to be completed in early 2006.

Miriam Vale intersection upgrade

The Government has kept its election promise to spend $2.0 million to improve the safety of the Bruce Highway near the turnoff to Agnes Water and Seventeen Seventy. This section of the highway has a history of collisions and near misses, but soon there will be sheltered right-turn lanes to help prevent rear-end collisions. The Government will spend $1.5 million on the project in 2005-06; $0.5 million was allocated in 2004-05.

Burdekin safety upgrade

The Burdekin Shire Council has started to construct a series of roundabouts on the Bruce Highway through Ayr, under the Government's $7.0 million package of Burdekin safety works.

The roundabouts will be built at the intersections of the Bruce Highway and Little Drysdale Street, Queen Street and McKenzie Street, Queen Street and Young Street, and Edward Street and Graham Street.

The upgrade also involves building new traffic islands. The pedestrian crossing from Honeycombes to the Ayr Pool will be upgraded; a new pedestrian crossing will be constructed from the Burdekin Theatre to the bowling alley. The upgrade will be followed by further works in the Home Hill central business district.

Tully flood works

The Government has committed $80.0 million over five years ($2.9 million in 2005-06) to meet the full cost of flood-proofing a 15 kilometre stretch of the Bruce Highway south of Tully. The 2005-06 funding will enable Main Roads Queensland to investigate the hydrology of the floodplain and explore road construction options. The initial round of public consultation and investigations ends in June 2006.

Cardwell Range upgrade planning

Planning will begin soon for upgrading one of the most difficult sections of the Bruce Highway between Townsville and Cairns, where it winds over the Cardwell Range. The road is narrow, with poor shoulders on either side, and overtaking is difficult.

The Government will spend $1.0 million over three years ($0.2 million in 2005-06) to complete a study examining the options for improving the alignment and standard of the highway. Main Roads Queensland will supervise the study, which will include consultation with community bodies.

Warrego Highway

Plainland interchange

The Government will spend $9.1 million in 2005-06 to finish constructing a new overpass that will eliminate the sub-standard intersection at Plainland on the Warrego Highway. The Government's total commitment to the project is $12.0 million.

Most of the crashes at this location have involved side road traffic attempting to cross the highway traffic or merge with it, so the overpass will make the intersection much safer. It is expected to open to traffic in January 2006.

Toowoomba second range crossing

The Government has carried out its election promise to spend an extra $4.0 million in 2004-05 to continue land purchases along the route of the future Toowoomba bypass and second range crossing. The Government's total commitment to land purchases for the bypass is now $33.3 million.

The proposed Toowoomba bypass is 42 kilometres long, running from the Helidon Spa in the east to the Gore Highway near Westbrook Creek in the west. The alignment will not be suitable for rail because of the different engineering standards required for road and rail operations. Options for a future rail corridor between Gowrie and Grandchester are being explored.

Eight Mile intersection, near Warwick

The Government has committed $4.3 million in 2005-06 to continue planning and development of the new Eight Mile interchange, at the junction of the New England and Cunningham highways. The intersection is a known black spot, with tight curves and poor sight lines.

Barkly Highway - Mount Isa to Camooweal

The Government has committed $116.6 million from 2004-05 to 2008-09 ($29.9 million in 2005-06) to improve the Barkly Highway and build high-level bridges from Mt Isa to the Northern Territory border. The works will enable the highway to stay open longer during the Wet, with less damage to the vehicles that use it. The Government's funding in 2005-06 consists of:

  • $18.5 million to continue replacing the six Buckley River/King Creek bridges and about 15 kilometres of roadworks; and
  • $11.4 million for the Wooroona Creek upgrading, which involving 60 metres of bridges and another 15 kilometres of road pavement reconstruction.

The bridges across Inca Creek and the associated roadworks are subject to further community consultation before construction can start.

Callemondah overpass

The Government has committed $3.0 million ($2.0 million in 2005-06) to meet half the cost of the new Callemondah overpass in Gladstone, which will complete the western bypass of the city. The Queensland Government has agreed to meet the rest of the $6.0 million total cost.

The overpass will connect Don Young Drive and Red Rover Road with a bridge and eliminate a busy railway level crossing. The overpass will make this route suitable for use by B-double heavy transports. The overpass is expected to be completed by December 2005.

Townsville Ring Road

The Government will spend $5.0 million in 2005-06 to get planning underway for the Townsville ring road, which will connect the Douglas Arterial Road to the Bruce Highway north of Townsville. It will enable heavy vehicles to bypass the city, reducing traffic and congestion in the suburbs of Vincent, Heatly, Cranbrook, Aitkenvale and Mount Louisa.

The Government has committed $40.0 million over three years to the project.

Bundaberg Port Road

The Government has committed $1.0 million ($0.9 million in 2005-06) toward the cost of a ring road around the Port of Bundaberg. The road will make business easier for the fishing operations based at the port and improve access to nearby Burnett Heads. The Government has committed its funding on the condition that it will be matched by other levels of government.

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AUSLINK STRATEGIC REGIONAL PROJECTS

Tablelands Road

The Government has committed $0.6 million ($0.5 million in 2005-06) to realign the intersection of Tablelands Road and Wartburg Road, between Gladstone and Bundaberg in Central Queensland. Tablelands Road is a key regional arterial serving Miriam Vale Shire, and the realignment will make the intersection safer.

River Heads Road

The Government will contribute $0.8 million in 2005-06 toward the $2.0 million cost of upgrading the River Heads Road at Hervey Bay and expunging its local name: "Killer Heads Road." The road is the main connection to Fraser Island, and the funding will help widening it from six metres to seven metres, with wide shoulders.

Bribie Island Road

The Government will spend $125,000 in 2005-06 to make Bribie Island Road safer. It is a major state arterial that connects to the popular holiday and retirement island north-east of Brisbane. The safety treatment will be near the Shell service station, about half-way between Caboolture and the Bribie Island Bridge. The movement of vehicles on and off the road at this point creates an unacceptable safety hazard.

Russett Park Bridge

The Government has committed $0.5 million in 2005-06 to meet one-third of the cost of a high-level bridge, replacing a causeway over the Barron River, near Kuranda in Far North Queensland. The bridge will meet the road access needs of the small Russett Park community, and consists of nine spans with a deck three metres higher than the existing causeway.

The Mareeba Shire Council will be able to complete the project before the start of the 2005-06 wet season, subject to the Queensland Government providing financial support.

Outback Highway

The Government has committed $10.0 million to upgrade priority sections of the 2,800 kilometre outback route linking Laverton in Western Australia with Winton in south-west Queensland, via Alice Springs and the Uluru/Kata Tjuta National Park. The 2005-06 allocation, $3.0 million, will be shared between Queensland ($1.0 million), the Northern Territory ($1.0 million) and Western Australia ($1.0 million).

Discussions are under way between the Department of Transport and Regional Services and the Outback Highway Development Council on a programme of works. Each project will be selected on its merits and its contribution to the development of the highway. The Western Australian, Queensland, and Northern Territory governments and local authorities will also need to contribute to the task of upgrading this link.

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LOCAL ROAD FUNDING

Queensland local authorities will receive $62.5 million in 2005-06 from the AusLink Roads to Recovery Programme and $93.1 million in untied local road grants.

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AUSLINK BLACK SPOT PROGRAMME

Queensland will receive $8.9 million in 2005-06 under the AusLink Black Spot Programme, which will be directed to fixing about 75 priority crash locations.

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Footnote

1The Queensland Government is required to sign an AusLink bilateral agreement as a condition of receiving funding for these AusLink projects. The condition will not affect the AusLink Roads to Recovery Programme, including its Strategic Regional Programme and funding for unincorporated areas, the AusLink Black Spot Programme or untied local road grants.