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Federal Government Keeps the Captial Region Moving

John Anderson

Deputy Prime Minister
Minister for Transport and Regional Services
Leader of the National Party


14th May 2002

The Federal Government will spend $22.1 million on ACT roads during 2002-03 and has decided that the Queanbeyan bypass will be the next major federally-funded road project to start in the capital region, the Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Transport and Regional Services, John Anderson, said today.

"The Queanbeyan bypass will be the third major road entrance to Canberra funded partially or wholly by the Federal Government in the past five years. This decision demonstrates our commitment to develop stronger regional traffic links that address congestion and safety issues," Mr Anderson said.

Keeping Our Promise on the Queanbeyan bypass

"The Federal Government has confirmed its offer of $2 million toward the cost of building a heavy vehicle bypass around the Queanbeyan central business district.

"This funding will be contributed in 2004-05, once the ACT and NSW Governments have confirmed their participation, obtained environmental approvals and finished planning the project. I call on them to accelerate the planning for the project so it can be completed as soon as possible.

"The Commonwealth will direct its $2 million share of the project to the ACT Government, because most of the bypass will need to be built within the Territory.

"The Queanbeyan heavy vehicle bypass will divert up to 45 percent of the heavy vehicles that use Monaro Street, Queanbeyan's main street. The bypass is expected to link East Queanbeyan with Canberra Avenue via The Oaks Estate, generally following Thurralilly Street, Yass Road, Pialligo Avenue, Oaks Estate Road and Railway Street. The exact route will be finalised during the public consultation process.

Barton Highway duplication

"The Government will spend $4 million in 2002-03 to complete work on duplicating the Barton Highway from Gungahlin Drive to the Federal Highway. The five-kilometre project is due to open in December 2002, although the Gungahlin Bridge is expected to be carrying traffic by the end of July. The Federal Government is contributing a total of $16 million to the Barton Highway duplication over 2001-02 and 2002-03. About $12 million will be spent by 30 June 2002," Mr Anderson said.

Federal Highway

Mr Anderson said the Federal Highway would receive minor attention following the achievement of freeway conditions between Canberra and Sydney. The Federal Government recently spent $250,000 improving safety at the Gundaroo Road/Bungendore Road intersection with the Federal Highway.

"Older sections of pavement between the Hume Highway junction and Collector are receiving closer attention under the National Highway maintenance programme.

Saving Lives with the Black Spot Programme

"The Government has kept its election commitment to continue the Black Spot Programme, which provides funding to improve dangerous locations on Australia's roads. The programme is estimated to have prevented more than 1,500 serious crashes during its first three years of operation. We will spend $180 million nationally on the programme over the next four years.

"The ACT will receive $600,000 in 2002-03 under the Black Spot Programme, which will undoubtedly save lives," Mr Anderson said.

Maintaining the ACT's Local Roads

The 2002-03 Federal Budget allocates $17.5 million to the ACT arterial and local road network - $14.2 million as untied Local Road Grants and $3.3 million under the Roads to Recovery Programme. This money is allocated according to ACT Government priorities.

Mr Anderson said one of six projects in the ACT Roads to Recovery Programme was an overpass of Newcastle Street, and new northbound lanes for the Monaro Highway up to the Dairy Road bridge at Fyshwick.

"The $1.2 billion Roads to Recovery Programme is the largest funding injection into local roads by any Federal Government. In the ACT, the Territory government is responsible for identifying Roads to Recovery projects, because we recognise that local leaders are best placed to judge the needs of their communities," Mr Anderson said.

Media contact: Paul Chamberlin 02 62777680