Case Study C6: Corridor strategies look to the future
The 22,500 kilometre AusLink National Network comprises 24 road and rail links known as 'corridors'. During 2006-07, 25 people from the AusLink Division of the Department worked closely with colleagues from state and territory road transport agencies to articulate the strategic priorities for each corridor to 2030.
The strategies they prepared establish broad objectives for each corridor, based on the condition of the infrastructure, projected traffic growth and types of vehicles travelling the route. This analysis will support decisions about the scope, timing and cost of future AusLink projects.
The study of the Melbourne-Brisbane inland corridor, straddling three states, was one of the most complex. The project team involved a partnership between eight federal and state government transport agencies, each contributing their diverse views to articulate a common vision for the road and rail elements of the route.
The team established terms of reference and engaged consultants to prepare a background paper encompassing much of the state-based information about the highways making up the corridor-the Hume and Goulburn Valley highways in Victoria, the Newell Highway in New South Wales, and the Gore and Warrego highways in Queensland. The project proceeded in parallel with the Sydney-Brisbane corridor investigation, to take account of cross corridor issues, and incorporated the results of the North-South rail study into a direct rail route between Melbourne and Brisbane.
The cover of the Melbourne-Brisbane Corridor Strategy document that outlines broad objectives for the transport corridor between Melbourne and Brisbane.
The team inspected the corridor, using the expertise of engineers on the ground, and tapped the knowledge of local councils and key private sector stakeholders. The group also examined multi-modal operations and proposals.
As for all the corridor strategies, a draft strategy was prepared and made available for public comment. The responses were considered and, where appropriate, incorporated into the final strategy report. The completed strategies will be revised periodically to update forecasts and priorities.
The Council of Australian Governments has asked that the 24 AusLink corridor strategies be completed by mid 2007. The priorities identified in the strategies will provide a basis for the Australian Government and state and territory governments to negotiate project funding for future infrastructure development on the AusLink Network, and inform the development of AusLink 2 and future national land transport plans.