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Outcome 1-Infrastructure Outputs and Programs

Output 1.1.1-Infrastructure investment policy and programs

Highlights

In 2007-08, the fourth year of the national land transport plan, AusLink, the Department administered $3.0 billion in direct and indirect grants to replace, upgrade and maintain the quality of land transport infrastructure on behalf of the Australian Government.

The Black Spot Program administered $37.3 million to improve road safety at identified crash sites; 313 new black spots were approved for treatment in 2007-08.

In the 2008-09 Budget, the Australian Government announced funding of $559.3 million in 2008-09 for 45 early start projects under three AusLink programs: Investment, Strategic Regional, and Funding for road projects other than under the AusLink (National Land Transport) Act 2005. Work was initiated with states and the Northern Territory to ensure rapid commencement of the projects.

The Australian Government also announced the provision of $75.0 million to several states to conduct urban congestion and planning studies. Agreements enabling payment of funds in June 2008 were put in place with the states.

Bilateral negotiations with state and territory governments commenced on projects and funding arrangements for the Australian Government's land transport investment program for 2009-10
to 2013-14.

The AusLink Program Management System was implemented for the AusLink Investment, Black Spot and Roads to Recovery programs. This provides an online reporting and payment claims system for states, territories, local councils and the Australian Rail Track Corporation. It also facilitates improved program and financial management for the Department.

Overview

Output 1.1.1 is delivered by the Infrastructure Investment and the Infrastructure and Surface Transport Policy (ISTP) business divisions.

Through infrastructure investment, the Australian Government has committed to increasing the efficiency and safety of Australia's land transport infrastructure. The Department manages AusLink, a suite of programs aimed at improving national land transport infrastructure to meet Australia's changing transport needs.

In 2007-08, the output included 12 programs:

  • AusLink Investment;
  • AusLink Black Spot Projects;
  • AusLink Roads to Recovery;
  • AusLink Strategic Regional;
  • AusLink Strategic Regional - supplementary;
  • AusLink improving local roads;
  • AusLink improving the National Network;
  • Funding for road projects other than under the AusLink (National Land Transport) Act 2005;
  • Tackling urban congestion and planning;
  • Management of residual issues of former Australian National Railways Commission;
  • Murray River Bridges - Federation Fund; and
  • Upgrade of the Mainline Interstate Railway Track.

As a result of the Administrative Arrangements Order of 3 December 2007, the Major Project Facilitation (MPF) function was transferred to the Department from Invest Australia, a division within the former Department of Industry, Tourism and Resources. The MPF service is tailored to suit each project, drawing on the Department's knowledge and experience of government processes.

Output 1.1.1 corresponds to Output 1.3.1 and the COAG national reform agenda road transport aspects of Output 1.4.1 in the previous outcome and output structure (see Appendix L for a comparison between the current and previous structures).

Table 3.2 summarises the output's performance in 2007-08.

Summary of performance

Table 3.2 Summary of performance - Output 1.1.1 - Infrastructure investment policy and programs

Performance indicators Results
Effectiveness

The Australian Government's national land transport plan (AusLink) is implemented to maintain and improve the standard of national infrastructure (Infrastructure Investment).

In 2007-08, the Department administered $3.0 billion in direct and indirect grants for land transport infrastructure (including financial assistance grants for roads administered under Output 2.2.2). See the reports on individual programs for descriptions of their contribution to national infrastructure.

Infrastructure planning and investment decision making processes are improved in partnership with state and territory governments (Infrastructure Investment).

The Department continued to work closely with state and territory agencies. Bilateral negotiations with state and territory governments commenced on projects and funding arrangements for the land transport investment program for 2009-10 to 2013-14. The potential for the early start of projects was considered in conjunction with states and the Northern Territory.

The COAG national reform agenda for transport is actively progressed in conjunction with all Australian governments (ISTP).

The Department also worked with states and territories to implement the Phased Road Reform Plan for heavy vehicles agreed to by COAG in April 2007. A new national charging determination was endorsed by transport Ministers in February 2008. The Department is coordinating work to provide COAG with information to assess the benefits of moving to more direct charging of heavy vehicles. This first phase of results will be reported to COAG at the end of 2008.

Quality

Programs are administered in line with relevant legislation (Infrastructure Investment).

All programs were administered in accordance with relevant legislation, agreements, notes on administration and other guidance material.

Price

$19.2 million

The actual price of this output in 2007-08 was $19.5 million.

Overall performance

Fully achieved.

Detailed report on performance

Effectiveness - Output 1.1.1

The Australian Government's national land transport plan (AusLink) is implemented to maintain and improve the standard of national infrastructure.

The Australian Government's commitment to land transport infrastructure under AusLink over the five financial years to 30 June 2009 is $15.9 billion. In 2007-08, the fourth year of the plan, the Department administered $3.0 billion in direct and indirect grants to replace, upgrade and maintain the quality of land transport infrastructure on behalf of the Australian Government.

In the 2008-09 Budget, the government announced funding of $559.3 million in 2008-09 for 45 'early start' projects under three AusLink programs: Investment, Strategic Regional and Funding for road projects other than under the AusLink (National Land Transport) Act 2005 (AusLink Act). In 2007-08, the Department began negotiations with states and the Northern Territory to ensure rapid commencement of the projects.

Details of achievements are provided in the reports on performance for each of the programs administered under Output 1.1.1.

Infrastructure planning and investment decision making processes are improved in partnership with state and territory governments.

The Department continued to work cooperatively with counterpart agencies in all states and territories and local councils to implement land transport investment projects in 2007-08. States and the Northern Territory were consulted closely about the potential for 'early start' projects.

In 2007-08, the Department worked with state and territory governments to develop consistent best practice cost estimation processes to support future project planning and development. A workshop was held with states and territories in February 2008.

Bilateral negotiations with state and territory governments commenced on projects and funding arrangements for the land transport investment program for 2009-10 to 2013-14.

The AusLink Program Management System was implemented for the AusLink Investment, Black Spot and Roads to Recovery programs. This provides an online reporting and payment claims system for states, territories, local councils and the Australian Rail Track Corporation. It also facilitates improved program and financial management for the Department.

The COAG national reform agenda for transport is a progressed in conjunction with all Australian governments.

In April 2007, COAG agreed to a three-phase road reform plan to improve the efficiency of road freight and help to meet growing demand. Phase 1 is due for completion by December 2008. The Department played a key role during 2007-08 in work to deliver the reforms.

New heavy vehicle charges that ensure ongoing cost recovery of the damages that heavy vehicles do to the road network and that remove cross-subsidies from across vehicle classes were unanimously supported by the ATC on 29 February 2008. Legislation to implement the new charges was prepared but is yet to pass through the Australian Parliament.

The Department is coordinating work to assess the benefits of moving to more direct charging of heavy vehicles, potentially encompassing mass-distance location-based charges. In cooperation with the states and territories, the Department commissioned reports on the extent to which heavy vehicle externalities and road costs imposed by heavy vehicles should be included in a cost base to be recovered from heavy vehicles.

Work is also progressing on the development of a methodology to quantify road funding to meet community service obligations (CSOs) and a method to take this into account in calculating a heavy vehicle charges cost base. Analysis work on externalities, road costs and CSOs will be completed for reporting to COAG at the end of 2008.

Quality - Output 1.1.1

Programs are administered in line with relevant legislation.

All programs were administered in line with the AusLink Act or other relevant legislation. The AusLink Act provides for the funding of projects related to land transport matters and for related purposes.

In 2007-08, the Department administered the following programs:

  • AusLink Investment;
  • AusLink Black Spot Projects;
  • AusLink Roads to Recovery;
  • AusLink Strategic Regional;
  • AusLink Strategic Regional - supplementary;
  • AusLink improving local roads;
  • AusLink improving the national network;
  • Tackling urban congestion and planning;
  • Funding for road projects other than under the AusLink (National Road Transport) Act 2005;
  • Management of residual issues of former Australian National Railways Commission;
  • Murray River Bridges - Federation Fund; and
  • Upgrade of Mainline Interstate Railway Track.

Administered programs for Output 1.1.1-Infrastructure investment policy and programs

Table 3.3 Summary of performance - AusLink Investment

Performance indicators Results
Effectiveness

Road, rail and related infrastructure is maintained and enhanced along designated transport corridors.

A total of 189 National Network projects were funded under the five-year program. Of these, 115 had been completed and nearly all other projects were well advanced by 30 June 2008.

Road maintenance contributions were provided to states and territories in line with the AusLink allocation formula.

Infrastructure planning and investment decision making processes are improved in partnership with state and territory governments.

The Department continued to work cooperatively with counterpart agencies in all states and territories to implement land transport investment projects in 2007-08.

Bilateral negotiations with state and territory governments commenced on projects and funding arrangements for the Australian Government's land transport investment program for 2009-10 to 2013-14.

Quality

Transport corridor objectives, strategies and priorities reflect national needs for future investment.

The Department completed 23 corridor strategies with states and territories covering the designated road and rail links that make up the National Land Transport Network. The strategies have been referred to Infrastructure Australia to help inform its work on the national infrastructure audit and the infrastructure priority list.

Projects are administered in line with relevant legislation.

All AusLink Investment projects active in 2007-08 were administered in accordance with relevant legislation. Most projects were administered under the AusLink Act, while a small number of former Roads of National Importance projects were administered under the Australian Land Transport Development Act 1988.

Projects were also administered in accordance with AusLink bilateral agreements (between the Australian Government and each state and territory government), a memorandum of understanding with the Australian Rail Track Corporation and notes on administration.

Cost

$1,841.9 million

The actual cost of this program in 2007-08 was $1,847.3 million. The increase is due to unspent funds being moved to the program from the Funding for road projects other than under the AusLink (National Land Transport) Act 2005 program. Funding will be reduced in 2008-09 by an equivalent amount.

Overall performance

Fully achieved.

Effectiveness - AusLink Investment

Performance indicators Results
Effectiveness

Road, rail and related infrastructure is maintained and enhanced along designated transport corridors.

AusLink Investment funds maintenance and construction projects on the National Land Transport Network, as well as a small number of projects off the network. The Australian Government invested $1,847.3 million on projects and maintenance in 2007-08. Some projects were funded jointly with state and territory governments and other parties.

Of the 189 National Network projects in the five-year program, 115 had been completed by 30 June 2008. Projects that were completed in 2007-08 included:

  • duplication of the Brunswick Heads to Yelgun section of the Pacific Highway;
  • Pakenham bypass;
  • Tugun bypass;
  • Clackline bypass;
  • upgrade of the Hampstead, Regency and Mullers intersection in Adelaide; and
  • duplication of the Penguin to Ulverstone Stage 2 section of the Bass Highway.

Projects that began or continued in 2007-08 included:

  • Ballina bypass, Bonville deviation and duplication of the Karuah to Bulahdelah (Stages 2 and 3) and Coopernook to Moorland sections of the Pacific Highway;
  • the western bypass of Geelong;
  • construction of an improved rail link to the Port of Melbourne;
  • construction of the Logan Motorway-Ipswich Motorway interchange;
  • construction of the Perth-Bunbury Highway;
  • construction of the Northern Expressway and upgrading of Port Wakefield Road in Adelaide; and
  • upgrade works on the Victoria Highway.

In the May 2008 Budget the government allocated funding for 35 'early start' projects to commence in 2008-09. In 2007-08, the Department worked with states and the Northern Territory to ensure rapid commencement of the projects.

Infrastructure planning and investment decision making processes are improved in partnership with state and territory governments.

As described in the summary of performance for Output 1.1.1, bilateral negotiations with state and territory governments commenced on projects and funding arrangements for the Australian Government's land transport investment program for 2009-10 to 2013-14. This includes National Network projects.

Table 3.4 Summary of performance - AusLink Black Spot Projects

Performance indicators Results
Effectiveness

Road crashes are reduced at treated sites, along with trauma and associated costs to the community.

Black Spot Projects are a key element of the Australian Government's efforts to reduce the national road fatality rate by 40% over the decade to 2010. In 2007-08, the Department administered $37.3 million in support for projects to improve road safety at identified crash sites.

The program has reduced the risk of crashes by funding measures such as traffic lights, roundabouts, signage and edge sealing at dangerous locations on roads around Australia.

Quality

Priority is given to proposals for cost-effective treatment of sites with a proven history of crashes (black spots).

In 2007-08, the Department continued to work with state and territory agencies to ensure that the program was administered efficiently and cost-effectively across all jurisdictions.

Most funding goes to treat sites with a record of at least three accidents involving casualties over a five-year period that can demonstrate a robust benefit to cost ratio of at least 2:1.

Approximately 50% of program funding is reserved for projects in rural areas, consistent with the proportion of road deaths and serious injuries occurring in those areas. Rural projects received 49% of the total funding in 2007-08.

Payments are made in line with the AusLink legislation.

The Department administered payments under this program in line with Part 7 of the AusLink Act.

Quantity

Approximately 300 'black spots' are approved for funding.

While most black spots are nominated by state and local governments, members of the public can nominate a black spot through the AusLink website www.auslink.gov.au

The number of Black Spot Projects approved varies each year depending on the cost of approved works. In 2007-08, 313 new black spots were approved for treatment.

Cost

$47.5 million

The actual cost of this program in 2007-08 was $37.3 million.

Funding is provided to the states and territories for approved projects, with payments made on the basis of claimed project expenditure. The states and territories collectively under-claimed the available funding by $10.2 million in 2007-08 because of delays in completing some projects. These projects will be completed during 2008-09 and the states and territories will claim the funding balance.

Approval has been provided to move $6.0 million of the underspend forward to 2008-09.

Overall performance

Mostly achieved.

Table 3.5 Summary of performance - AusLink Roads to Recovery

Performance indicators Results
Effectiveness

Local councils use funds to maintain and improve land transport infrastructure.

The Roads to Recovery program provides funding for projects at a local level. Each local authority across Australia is guaranteed a share of the program funding.

Shares are determined by a formula, based on population and road length, set by the Local Government Grants Commission in each state and the Northern Territory. Money is paid directly by the Australian Government to each council. Decisions on projects to be funded are made locally and reported to the Australian Government.

Funds are used for a range of purposes, including road work, bridge work and the installation of traffic lights, but cannot be spent on moveable capital equipment such as graders. Councils are required to lodge audited financial statements stating how they have spent the program funds.

At 30 June 2008, 13,430 projects had been completed under the program since 1 July 2005.

Quality

Payments are made in line with AusLink legislation.

The Department administered payments under this program in line with Part 8 of the AusLink Act.

Quantity

Approximately 700 councils are eligible for funding.

All of the 612 local councils of Australia are eligible to receive funding under the Roads to Recovery program. Funds are also available to the Northern Territory Government and state governments for roads in unincorporated areas.

Over the four financial years, commencing 2005-06, of the current program:

$1.2 billion will be provided to councils, distributed in accordance with the recommendations of local government grants commissions; and

$30 million will be provided to the unincorporated areas of New South Wales, Victoria, South Australia, the Northern Territory and the Indian Ocean Territories.

Cost

$307.5 million

The actual cost of this program in 2007-08 was $262.5 million. Approval has been given to move the underspend of $45.0 million
to 2008-09.

Under the AusLink Act, the Minister has determined a four-year allocation for each local government authority (LGA) for the period 2005-06 to 2008-09. Each LGA is expected to fully claim its four-year allocation by 2008-09.

Overall performance

Fully achieved.

Table 3.6 Summary of performance - AusLink Strategic Regional

Performance indicators Results
Effectiveness

Local councils use funds to develop regional land transport infrastructure supporting industry, tourism and economic development.

In 2007-08, 16 projects were completed, making a total of 35 projects completed since 2004-05.

Quality

Projects satisfy eligibility criteria.

The program was administered under Part 6 of the AusLink Act.

Quantity

Approximately 700 councils are eligible for funding.

In total, 87 councils, five state governments and the Northern Territory Government have received or are receiving funding for 107 approved projects. The Australian Government has announced funding for another six projects in 2008-09.

Cost

$75.7 million

The actual cost of this program in 2007-08 was $75.7 million.

Overall performance

Fully achieved.

Effectiveness - AusLink Strategic Regional

Performance indicator Results

Local councils use funds to develop regional land transport infrastructure supporting industry, tourism and economic development.

The AusLink Strategic Regional program encourages collaboration among local government authorities to develop an effective regional transport network to assist established and emerging industries and strengthen social connectivity.

Project funding is conditional on proponents entering into a funding agreement with the Australian Government. Since the program began in 2004, 107 funding agreements have been finalised.

Between 2004-05 and 2008-09, the program provided funds of $219.8 million.

Sixteen projects were completed during 2007-08, including:

  • replacement of the Hume Bridge at Corowa, New South Wales;
  • reconstruction and rehabilitation of main roads 301 and 101 north of Newcastle, New South Wales;
  • upgrading of Chappel Road, north-western Victoria;
  • sealing of Eidsvold-Theodore Road, Queensland;
  • sealing Point Labatt Road, Streaky Bay, South Australia; and
  • upgrading the Tasman Highway between Nunamara and Targa, Tasmania.

In the May 2008 Budget, the government announced the allocation of $10 million to 'early start' projects in 2008-09. Work has commenced on administrative arrangements. These projects include:

  • Colac-Lavers Hill Road, Victoria;
  • Peninsula Development Road, Queensland;
  • Victor Harbor intersection with Main South Road, South Australia;
  • Churchill Road, South Australia; and
  • north-east freight roads, Tasmania.

Quality - AusLink Strategic Regional

Performance indicator Results

Projects satisfy eligibility criteria.

Under Part 6 of the AusLink Act, 107 projects have been approved. The approval process requires that the approving Minister is satisfied that projects meet legislative criteria in terms of eligibility and appropriateness. Throughout 2007-08, the Department continued to monitor projects to ensure that funds spent were consistent with the scope of the project and that the projects progressed according to agreed timelines. This included a number of on-site visits to projects.

Table 3.7 Summary of performance - AusLink Strategic Regional - supplementary

Performance indicators Results
Effectiveness

Local councils and state and territory governments on behalf of unincorporated areas use funds to develop regional land transport infrastructure supporting industry, tourism and economic development.

In 2006-07, $250.0 million was paid to local councils and state and territory governments to be expensed in subsequent years. Funding agreements covering 102 projects were finalised with proponents in June 2007. In 2007-08, 12 projects were completed, including:

  • Dickson Road upgrade, Wyong Shire, New South Wales;
  • the Rock Bullenbung construction, Lockhart Shire, New South Wales;
  • Manks Road construction, City of Casey, Victoria;
  • Highams Bridge upgrade and rehabilitation, Mackay Regional Council, Queensland; and
  • Berwick Street upgrade (McMillan to Kent Street), Victoria Park Town Council, Western Australia.
Quality

Projects eligible for approval by the responsible Minister under Part 6 of the AusLink (National Land Transport) Act 2005.

All 102 projects funded in the supplementary round were approved by the responsible Minister.

Quantity

Approximately 700 councils and state and territory governments on behalf of unincorporated areas are eligible for funding.

The Australian Government provided supplementary funding for 102 projects, to 79 councils and the South Australian Government

Cost

$25.0 million

The Department estimates what proportion of the total funding will be used each year, and monitors the expensing of the funds against the progress of the work.

The actual cost of this program in 2007-08, as reported by funding recipients, was $46.0 million. The Department's estimate was exceeded because projects progressed more quickly than expected.

Overall performance

Fully achieved.

Note: Performance indicators for this program which was first announced in the 2007-08 PAES, are based on those originally published in the 2007-08 PBS for the Auslink Strategic Regional program, but expanded to include state and territory governments which can apply on behalf of unincorporated areas.

Table 3.8 Summary of performance - AusLink improving local roads

Performance indicators Results
Effectiveness

Local councils use funds to accelerate works to maintain and improve the local road network.

In 2005-06, a special one-off payment of $307.5 million was paid to local councils, three state governments, the Northern Territory Government and the Indian Ocean Territories, to be expensed in subsequent years to accelerate improvements to local road networks.

Quality

Funds are paid to local councils and for unincorporated areas and are used for the construction or maintenance of roads.

The funds were distributed and are administered under funding conditions similar to those of the AusLink Roads to Recovery Program. Reports from councils, the state governments and the Northern Territory Government on their use of these funds during 2007-08 are to be lodged by 31 October 2008.

Quantity

Approximately 700 councils are eligible for funding.

Payments were made in June 2006 to 706 councils, the Northern Territory Government and state governments responsible for roads in unincorporated areas.

Cost

$153.8 million

The Department estimates what proportion of the total funding will be used each year, and monitors the expensing of the funds against the progress of the work.

Expensing of the prepayment occurs on receipt of an annual or quarterly report. In 2007-08, grant recipients provided reports that resulted in $223.7 million being expensed, $125.0 million related to activity in 2006-07 and $98.7 million to 2007-08.

Overall performance Fully achieved.

The $2.3m recently upgraded Higham's Bridge on Owens Creek Loop Road off the Mackay Eungella Road, Queensland

The $2.3m recently upgraded Higham's Bridge on Owens Creek Loop Road off the Mackay Eungella Road, Queensland (Photo DITRDLG)

Table 3.9 Summary of performance - AusLink improving the National Network

Performance indicators Results
Effectiveness

Roads and related infrastructure is enhanced along designated transport corridors.

In 2005-06, $1,820.0 million was paid to states and the Northern Territory to be expensed in subsequent years to accelerate works on the National Network. Sound progress was achieved on all works packages in 2007-08, with construction activity well underway.

Quality

Projects are administered in line with relevant legislation and agreements between jurisdictions and the Australian Government.

The Department administers projects in line with the AusLink Act, memorandums of understanding, sections of AusLink bilateral agreements and notes on administration.

Cost

$693.9 million

The Department estimates what proportion of the total funding will be used each year and monitors the expenditure of the funds against the progress of the work.

The 2007-08 PBS provided for an estimated cost of $524.0 million. This was revised to $693.9 million in the PAES in light of better than expected progress. However, because of unforeseen factors such as wet weather and a modification of accounting treatment, the revised estimate was not reached.

The actual cost of this program in 2007-08, as reported by funding recipients, was $536.7 million.

Overall performance Fully achieved.

 

Did you know

AusLink Black Spot Program
Anyone can nominate a Black Spot under the AusLink Black Spot program with nominations invited from state and territory governments, local councils, community groups and associations, road user groups, industry and individuals. Nominations can be made through the AusLink website www.auslink.gov.au

Funding is mainly available for the treatment of Black Spot sites, or road lengths, with a proven history of crashes. However, the AusLink Black Spot program also recognises that there are road locations which could be considered as 'accidents waiting to happen'. Therefore, up to 20% of program funds may be used to treat sites where road traffic engineers have completed a road safety audit and found that remedial work is necessary. This allows an opportunity for proactive safety works to be undertaken before casualties occur.

Effectiveness - AusLink improving the National Network

Performance indicator Results

Roads and related infrastructure is enhanced along designated transport corridors.

In June 2006, the Australian Government paid $1.8 billion to states and the Northern Territory to undertake designated works packages towards improving the AusLink National Network. The funding is being expensed by the states and the Northern Territory over the period to 2010. In general, work proceeded faster than initially expected in 2007-08.

Works and progress under the program include:

  • providing dual carriageway on the remaining unduplicated sections of the Hume Highway south of the junction with the Sturt Highway. This does not include approximately 20 kilometres at Woomargama, Holbrook and Tarcutta, New South Wales, where planning for bypasses is required - major construction work is on schedule;
  • duplicating the Pacific Highway from Moorland to Herons Creek, south of Port Macquarie, New South Wales, and undertaking priority safety works along the highway - the safety works are nearly complete and construction work has begun on the Moorland to Herons Creek project;
  • undertaking flood immunity works on the Bruce Highway at Tully and a range of improvements on the highway between Townsville and Cairns, Queensland - construction works are on schedule;
  • upgrading the Great Northern, Great Eastern and Eyre highways in Western Australia, including completing the Lennard Street to Muchea section of the Great Northern Highway and further bridgeworks on the highway in the Kimberley - work on the Eyre Highway has been completed and construction work is progressing on the other two highways;
  • upgrading the Sturt Highway from Argent Road to Nuriootpa, South Australia (including duplication to Daveyston) - several upgrading works have been completed and duplication is on schedule;
  • upgrading the East Tamar Highway in Tasmania, including a bypass of Dilston - most works have commenced; planning processes are being completed for Dilston bypass and other projects are complete or underway; and
  • undertaking flood mitigation works across the Victoria River floodplain on the Victoria Highway in the Northern Territory - construction of Phase 1 of the project, which includes replacing the Victoria River bridge, has begun.

Table 3.10 Summary of performance - Funding for road projects other than under the AusLink (National Land Transport) Act 2005

Performance indicators Results
Effectiveness

Freight and logistics infrastructure connecting with the AusLink National Network and export facilities are maintained and enhanced to support freight flows.

Funds were made available to the City of Whitehorse to undertake a detailed feasibility analysis of options for addressing congestion associated with the Whitehorse Road and Springvale Road intersection upgrade in Melbourne.

Quality

Land transport infrastructure projects, identified and developed in consultation with asset owners, improve land transport linkages including with the AusLink National Network.

The City of Whitehorse engaged Maunsell Australia Pty Ltd to undertake a comprehensive options and feasibility analysis. The report is expected to be finalised in early 2008-09, leading to the commencement of the detailed design phase.

Projects are administered in line with relevant legislation.

The Whitehorse Road and Springvale Road intersection upgrade project was administered in accordance with a funding agreement.

Quantity

Various land transport infrastructure projects identified and developed in consultation with asset owners.

There has been ongoing consultation with the City of Whitehorse and the Victorian State Government on the next phase of the Whitehorse Road and Springvale Road intersection upgrade project.

In the May 2008 Budget, the Government announced the allocation of $33.3 million to four 'early start' projects in 2008-09 under this program. Work has commenced on administrative arrangements. These projects are:

  • Kingston bypass, Tasmania;
  • Alstonville bypass, New South Wales;
  • remote community access roads, Queensland; and
  • community, beef and mining roads, Northern Territory.
Cost

$6.0 million

The actual cost of this program in 2007-08 was $0.6 million. Approval has been provided to move $5.4 million forward to 2008-09.

Overall performance Partially achieved.

Notes: The performance indicators are from the 2007-08 PAES.
This program was previously named 'Whitehorse Road and Springvale Road intersection upgrade'. It has been renamed to 'Funding for road projects other than under the AusLink (National Land Transport) Act 2005' as it now incorporates other road projects.

Table 3.11 Summary of performance - Tackling urban congestion and planning

Performance indicators Results

None

The tackling urban congestion and planning measure provides $75.0 million in 2007-08 for funding urban congestion and planning studies in New South Wales, Victoria, Queensland, Western Australia and South Australia.

The Department administers the projects under the AusLink Act, sections of AusLink bilateral agreements and notes on administration. Joint Commonwealth-state steering committees are being established for the projects.

Agreements were put in place with the states in June 2008, enabling payment of the full $75 million. Payments were made under the AusLink Act.

Cost

$75 million

The actual cost of this program in 2007-08 was $75.0 million.

Overall performance Fully achieved.

Note: This administered program was announced in the 2007-08 PSAES and performance indicators were not published.

Table 3.12 Summary of performance - Management of residual issues of former Australian National Railways Commission (AN)

Performance indicators Results
Effectiveness

The future of the former AN plans is resolved, along with any other residual issues which may emerge.

The AN plan room in Adelaide houses around 180,000 plans and drawings of rail rolling stock and infrastructure. In 2007-08, the Department, working with the National Archives of Australia, moved closer to finalising a Records Disposal Authority (RDA) for the plans. The RDA is expected to be finalised in the early part of 2008-09. The archiving process and finalisation of the plan management process is expected in 2008-09.

Representations were received from a number of railway historical societies interested in adding the diesel electric locomotive 'GM1' to their museums' collections. In the early part of 2008-09, the Department is expected to commence an expression of interest process to transfer ownership of the locomotive.

Quality

Public access to plans of heritage value is maintained.

Public access to the AN plans was maintained in Adelaide throughout 2007-08. The RDA identifies plans of heritage value and proposes to maintain public access through the National Archives of Australia.

Cost

$0.4 million

The actual cost of this program in 2007-08 was $0.04 million.

The budget figure is a nominal amount based on an estimate of the required legal costs, costs of consultants and other professional services required on an as-needs basis. In 2007-08 work progressed on AN residual issues, but fewer than expected professional services were required.

Overall performance Partially achieved.

Table 3.13 Summary of performance - Murray River Bridges - Federation Fund Project

Performance indicators Results
Effectiveness

New regional infrastructure improves access.

The objective is to provide a crossing of the Murray River at Echuca-Moama, Victoria.

Following the appointment of an independent facilitator by the Victorian Government during 2007-08, a potential corridor was identified and agreed to in principle by the key stakeholders, including the Yorta Yorta Nation Aboriginal Corporation.

Victorian and New South Wales government representatives, along with representatives from the Campaspe and Murray shires, met in January 2008 to discuss the next steps in the planning and community consultation phase. Planning and route selection is expected to occur in 2008-09.

Quality

Payments are made in line with the Australian Government's obligations.

No payments were made in 2007-08.

Location

A new bridge is constructed over the Murray River at Echuca-Moama.

 

Cost

Nil

In 2007-08, no payments were made to this project.

Overall performance Partially achieved.

Table 3.14 Summary of performance - Upgrade of the Mainline Interstate Railway Track (removal of the interstate rail track from Wodonga CBD)

Performance indicators Results
Effectiveness

The project improves interstate rail track efficiency and amenity of the Wodonga town centre.

In February 2007, the Australian Government approved funding of $45 million to the Victorian Government towards the cost of constructing a rail bypass at Wodonga. Of that funding, $25 million was from the Upgrade of the Mainline Interstate Railway Track program and $20 million was from the AusLink Investment program.

The rail bypass will benefit the residents of Wodonga, who have long had to deal with the disadvantages of having the Melbourne-Sydney mainline railway track running through the centre of their city. This has affected the efficiency and productivity of interstate rail services. It has also caused fragmentation of the Wodonga CBD and loss of valuable space that could be better used to provide civic amenities.

Construction work is expected to commence early in 2008-09 following negotiations between the Victorian Government and the track lessee over a new management lease.

Quality

The interstate mainline rail track through the Wodonga CBD is replaced with a rail bypass.

The approved bypass project will remove the rail track from the Wodonga CBD.

Payments are made in line with the Australian Government's obligations.

Payments were not made for this project in 2007-08.

Cost

$20.0 million

The actual cost of this program in 2007-08 was nil.

The underspend was due to delays in finalising the track lease and approvals for the project. Approval has been provided to move the funds to 2009-10.

Overall performance Partially achieved.

 

Did you know

ARTC sleeper replacement program
During 2007-08 the Australian Rail Track Corporation (ARTC) laid its millionth concrete sleeper, reaching the halfway mark of its sleeper replacement program on the Melbourne - Sydney - Brisbane corridor.
The sleeper replacement program and construction of several seven-kilometre passing lanes on the corridor will allow trains to overtake and pass each other on the fly, enabling trains to travel from Sydney to Melbourne in almost ten and a half hours and from Sydney to Brisbane in almost fifteen and a half hours, making rail more competitive with road for the carriage of freight.

Albury-Wodonga upgrade: Improving vehicle efficiency and pedestrian safety

Albury-Wodonga upgrade: Improving vehicle efficiency and pedestrian safety (Photo DITRDLG)

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