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Over $400 million for Queensland Roads

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

13th May 2003

The Federal Government will spend $402.1 million on Queensland roads in 2003-04, including major works on the Bruce and Warrego Highways due to be completed in the second half of this year, the Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Transport and Regional Services, John Anderson, said today.

"Road users will soon gain the full benefits of the Federal Government's $110.0  million widening of the Bruce Highway between Yandina and Cooroy and the $46.0  million duplication of the Gatton Bypass," Mr Anderson said.

Improving the Bruce Highway

"The Government will provide $16.0 million in 2003-04 to complete the $110.0 million duplication to four lanes of the Bruce Highway between Yandina and Cooroy. It is a high cost project but the estimated community, travel and safety benefits more than justify the investment.

"Sections of the new carriageway have been available for use during construction. All of the interchanges are currently in operation, although some work on them is still to be finished. The construction of the remaining ramps is underway, and the project is expected to be open to four lane traffic in July this year.

"Further north, the Federal Government will provide $10.0 million ($8.7 million in 2003-04) to upgrade the 6.9 kilometre section of the Bruce Highway between the Glenorchy Straight and the southern end of the Maryborough bypass. The funding will improve the highway's narrow width and rough pavement, provide overtaking lanes and upgrade intersections. The contract will be let in the near future.

"We will spend $7.0 million in 2003-04 on the realignment and reconstruction of the Bariveloe Road section of the highway south of Miriam Vale. The proposed works will provide safer motoring conditions over a distance of 6.1 kilometres. A further $1.0 million will be spent on the project in 2004-05.

"The Government has allocated $8.7 million over the next two years, including $6.5 million in 2003-04, to continue widening the Bruce Highway from four to six lanes south of Cairns.

"The funding will widen the highway between Sheehy Road and Foster Road and will reduce peak period traffic delays and congestion. The Government has already carried out our election promise to fund the widening of the highway between Ray Jones Memorial Drive and Sheehy Road.

"We have budgeted $7.0 million in 2003-04 to improve the safety of the highway in the Burdekin by starting work on the most important projects identified in phase 2 of the Burdekin Safety Audit. In April, work was completed on upgrading the Kirknie Road and Rossiter's Hill intersections, which both have significant crash histories.

Gatton Bypass duplication to be completed by Christmas

"The Federal Government will provide $20.0 million in 2003-04 for the completion of the $46.0  million Gatton Bypass duplication. The project is expected to be completed by December 2003.

"The bypass duplication will eliminate the last two-lane section of road between Brisbane and Toowoomba. It will increase the efficiency of the road through improved travel conditions, better overtaking opportunities and consistent travel speeds.

Douglas Arterial Road

"The Budget confirms the Government's decision to commit an extra $4 million toward the construction of the $53.3 million Douglas Arterial Road in Townsville. The Government has budgeted $17.1  million for the project in 2003-04, and a further $7.5  million in 2004-05. The Federal Government's contribution to the project is capped at $37.4 million, including the $9.9 million allocated to the project in 2002-03. The Queensland Government will meet the remainder of the cost.

"The Douglas Arterial Road will run from University Road to Upper Ross River Road and will include a new bridge over the Ross River. It is an important project that will reduce traffic congestion and delays on Nathan Street and University Drive.

Tugun Bypass

"The Budget also confirms the Government's commitment to provide a capped amount of $120.0  million toward the construction of the Tugun bypass, which will link the Pacific Motorway in Queensland with the Pacific Highway in New South Wales. The Federal funding will commence in 2006-07.

"The Tugun bypass will eliminate the chronic delays at the intersection of the Pacific Motorway and the Gold Coast Highway. The Queensland Government is responsible for the final route selection and the resolution of any environmental issues associated with the project.

Ipswich Motorway

"The Government has budgeted $61.7 million over the next three years ($10 million in 2003-04) to ease congestion and improve safety on the Ipswich Motorway while longer term options are explored. We have already spent $4.3 million on planning and design work, bringing our total contribution to the motorway to $66.0 million -- that's $2.0 million more than we promised in May 2001.

"The state government is developing a proposal for a major upgrade of the motorway, which we will consider under AusLink, our sweeping plan to reform the way Australia plans and funds its land transport infrastructure. At the same time, we have insisted that the state government undertake a comprehensive analysis of a northern alternative to the motorway.

Caboolture Motorway

"The Federal Government will spend $19.0 million from the Federation Fund in 2003-04 to widen the Caboolture Motorway from four to six lanes from Dohles Rocks Road to Boundary Road. The project was scheduled to begin in 2002-03, but was delayed because of Queensland's failure to agree to the conditions of the funding deed. The widening will be carried out to the same high standard as the Federally-funded upgrade of the adjoining section, from Pine River to Dohles Rocks Road.

"The Federal Government has committed a total of $75.0 million for the six laning project, including $40.0 million from the Federation Fund.

Barkly Highway

"The Federal Government has allocated $22.5 million in 2003-04 to upgrade the Barkly Highway, because we recognise its importance to northwest Queensland and the Northern Territory.

"The funding includes $14.5 million to build replacement bridges over Johnson, Nowraine and Inca Creeks and the Buckley River, which will reduce the threat posed by floods to this important road link. $8.0 million will be spent on widening and rehabilitation between Mt Isa and Camooweal.

"In total, the Government is spending $53.6 million to improve the Barkly Highway between 2002-03 and 2004-05.

Saving Lives with the National Black Spot Programme

"Queensland will receive $8.9 million in 2003-04 under the National Black Spot Programme, which provides funding to improve dangerous accident locations on Australia's roads. The programme is estimated to prevent around 500 serious crashes a year nationally.

Maintaining Queensland's local roads

"In 2003-04, the Government will invest $149.2 million in Queensland's local roads, including $86.7 million in untied Local Road Grants and $62.5 million under the Roads to Recovery Programme.

"The $1.2 billion Roads to Recovery Programme is the largest funding injection into local roads by any Federal Government. So far, councils have listed about 10,000 projects for funding, with a strong emphasis on improving road safety.

"In 2002-03, we had to defer $100 million of spending under the programme nationally to meet our overall budgetary requirements. Local authorities will receive their full Roads to Recovery allocation in 2003-04, and will receive an extra $100 million nationally in 2004-05 to make up for the deferral," Mr Anderson said.

Media contact: Paul Chamberlin 02 62777680 / 0419 233989

2003-04 Roads Programme

Brisbane Urban Link

Ipswich Motorway - Recent planning has revealed that upgrading the current Ipswich Motorway would be costly and may only provide medium term solutions.

The state government is developing a major up-grading proposal that will be considered by the Commonwealth under AusLink. At the same time, Queensland will examine a possible northern option that potentially offers longer term traffic solutions.

In the interim, the development of a programme of works consistent with the Federal Government's funding commitment for the Ipswich Motorway is nearing completion.

$10.0  million is being provided in 2003-04 with further funds earmarked in future years. The proposed works mainly involve the upgrading of ramps to improve safety for vehicles moving on and off the Ipswich Motorway.

The Government's total budget for the motorway upgrade is $66.0 million, $2.0 million more that its May 2001 commitment.

Brisbane Urban Corridor (BUC) Study - The BUC Traffic Planning Study is investigating community concerns and suggestions to improve traffic operation on Granard-Riawena-Kessels and Mt Gravatt - Capalaba Roads (an 11 kilometre stretch of the Brisbane Urban Corridor).

The draft report and recommendations were recently placed on public display and the report is expected to be finalised in the near future.

Gateway Motorway - The Gateway Motorway has experienced substantial traffic growth. The Federal Government is funding the planning for a major upgrade of the Gateway Motorway from Mt Gravatt-Capalaba Road to Nudgee Road, with $0.8 million allocated to continue the study in 2003-04.

Airport Drive Intersection

Airport Drive is the major road link between the Gateway Motorway and Brisbane Airport. The intersection with the Gateway Motorway is char-acterised by significant traffic congestion and time delays.

The capacity problems experienced at the roundabout are generated by traffic on the East-West Arterial and Airport Drive in addition to the Gateway Motorway. As a result, the cost of upgrading the roundabout is being shared by the Federal and state governments and the Brisbane Airport Corporation.

The Federal Government will provide $2.2  million (capped) in 2003-04 with the state government and the Brisbane Airport Corporation each contributing $1.0  million.

The proposed upgrading of the roundabout involves the addition of four slip lanes for left turn move-ments at the intersection.

Caboolture Motorway

The2003-04 Budget provides $19.0 million from Federation Fund to upgrade the Caboolture Motorway from Dohles Rocks Road to Boundary Road. A Deed of Grant with Queensland was finally signed on 14 April, a contractor has been selected and works are to commence shortly.

These works complement the upgrading already undertaken, which has seen the Motorway widened to eight lanes from the Gateway Motorway junction to Anzac Avenue and to six lanes as far as Dohles Rocks Road. The total Commonwealth commitment to these works is $75.0 million.

The project consists of widening the road from four to six lanes in the 7 km corridor and improved clearance at the Brays Road and Anzac Avenue overpass bridges.

Tugun bypass

The Federal and Queensland Governments have reached an agreement that will see the Tugun bypass become a reality. The Commonwealth will provide $120.0 million (capped) towards the construction of the bypass when works are ready to commence. $60.0 million will be available in 2006-07 with a further $60.0 million available in 2007-08.

In 1999, the traffic volume in the Tugun corridor was around 47,000 vehicles per day, and it is estimated that it will increase by half again within the decade.

The Queensland Government will plan and construct the road and will choose the route it will take.

Brisbane - Cairns

Yandina-Cooroy Duplication - The $110.0 million Yandina-Cooroy duplication will return community, travel, safety and other benefits estimated at 6.7 times the financial outlay. The Federal Government has set aside $16.0 million in 2003-04 for the completion of the project.

The project involves constructing a four lane highway on the current alignment, with some bends eliminated and sight distances improved.

The approved route solution involves:

  • on and off ramps in the south and an overpass bridge at the Eumundi-Noosa Road/Bunya Road intersection;
  • on and off ramps to the north and an overpass bridge at the Eumundi-Kenilworth Road/Memorial Drive intersection; and
  • a road linking the two halves. Part of the existing highway will be used for this purpose.

All interchanges are in operation, which eliminates all right turn movements across oncoming traffic, though some work is still required to complete them. Most of the remaining work on the project involves the completion of ramps and asphalt paving to be undertaken during May and June. The project is expected to be opened to four lane traffic in July 2003.

Gympie Safety Improvements - Federally funded safety improvements through Gympie will see improvements at the Bruce Highway intersections with Pine Street, Oak Street, Fritz Road, Vantage Road and Horton Road-Meadows Lane.

These works include the provision of separate right and left turn lanes on the highway and widening of shoulders. The total value of these works is $3.1 million with $2.5  million to be provided in 2003-04.

Cooroy-Gympie Route Study - Tenders have been called for a study into the Bruce Highway in the Gympie district. $0.7 million has been made available in 2003-04 for commencement of these investigations.

The study is expected to encompass a range of issues and provide a future strategy for the entire footprint from the Cooroy Bypass to Curra, north of Gympie.

Glenorchy Straight - This project involves widening and rehabilitation of the Bruce Highway over a distance of 6.9km between Glenorchy Straight and the Maryborough Bypass. The existing highway is narrow, with restricted overtaking opportunities and poor visibility at intersections.

The Three Mile Road intersection is to be relocated to improve sight distances, and the existing intersections at Four Mile, Five Mile, and Six Mile Roads will be upgraded to improve safety.

The total cost of the works is $10.0  million and the Federal Government has set aside $8.7  million in 2003-04 for this project.

Fairbairn Flats to Bariveloe Road - This section of the Bruce Highway is located south of Miriam Vale.

The proposed upgrading involves realigning the southern section of the project and reconstructing the northern section on the existing alignment. Drainage structures will be improved, pavement roughness reduced and the existing intersections at Bariveloe, Kiora and Lavender Roads are to be upgraded.

The Federal Government has earmarked $7.0 million for this project in 2003-04 with a further $1.0 million to be provided in 2004-05.

Burdekin Safety Works - Federal funding was announced in May 2002 to continue the Burdekin Safety Audit, construct the Bower Street roundabout in Ayr and allow the acceleration of works at the high priority Kirknie Road and Rossiter's Hill intersections.

The Burdekin community played an active role in the development of the Safety Audit and Phase Two has now been completed. Preliminary estimates for the works identified in the Burdekin Safety Audit are around $40  million.

The $7.0  million provided in the 2003-04 Budget includes $1.0  million for the state government to undertake the more rigorous planning and design required to provide accurate cost estimates of the identified works.

Remaining funds allocated in 2003-04 will be used to commence the first of the priority projects from Phase Two of the Safety Audit, subject to receipt by the Commonwealth of an appropriately detailed and costed proposal.

The Phase Two priority recommendations include upgrading intersections in Home Hill and Ayr, and improving safety around a curve at the northern entrance to Brandon. The audit also identified the need for safety measures on the Burdekin River Bridge such as improved lane delineation.

Southern Cairns -Cairns is the regional and economic hub for Far North Queensland.

The Federal Government will spend $8.7  million over the next two years, $6.5 million in 2003-04, to continue upgrading the Bruce Highway in the city's southern suburbs.

The proposed works consist primarily of:

  • widening of the Bruce Highway from four to six lanes from just south of the Sheehy Road intersection to south of the Foster Road inter-section;
  • upgrading of the Foster Road and Coombs Street intersections; and
  • providing a dedicated left-turn acceleration lane from Robert Road onto the Bruce Highway.

Planning investigations have shown that the northbound merge facility at the Robert Road intersection will resolve safety and congestion issues between Foster Road and Robert Road and defer the need to six-lane this section for a number of years.

Gladstone Port Access Road

The Gladstone Port Access Road will receive an allocation of $5.5  million in the 2003-04 Budget. The Federal Government is providing $7.5  million overall for the project with the state government, Gladstone Port Authority and Calliope Shire Council contributing the remainder of the $15.0  million cost.

The Port Access Road is to extend from a proposed connection to Glenlyon Road on the northern side of the existing rail overpass and will follow the existing rail line in a combined corridor.

After crossing Auckland Street, the bridged road-way will cross over Queensland Rail's spurline and marshalling yards before joining the existing roundabout within the port precinct. The road will comprise two 3.5 metre traffic lanes with one metre shoulders.

Brisbane - Darwin

Gatton Bypass - Duplication of the 19km Gatton Bypass, which will cost $46.0 million, began in May 2002.

The fully Federally funded project involves the construction of two extra traffic lanes eastbound, bridges and a new eastern interchange. The median width between eastbound and westbound lanes will be 21  metres, with a smaller distance separating traffic at each end.

Toowoomba Bypass - The Federal Government is committed to investigating options for a bypass and second range crossing at Toowoomba. A Steering Committee comprising Commonwealth, State and Council officials is managing the planning process. Planning is expected to be completed in the second half of 2003.

During the planning period a number of tasks will be carried out, including a review of traffic pre-dictions, determination of native title and cultural heritage issues, environmental clearances and a firm costing of the project.

The Federal Government is providing $6.0 million in 2003-04 for land acquisition. The Government will consider its future funding for the project under AusLink, Australia's first effective national land transport plan.

Barkly Highway - Following the opening in December 2002 of the new Georgina River Bridge, the next priorities are the Johnson, Nowraine and Inca Creeks and the Buckley River east of Camooweal.

The Federal Government's strategy includes realignments of these crossings and replacement bridges capable of withstanding the most typical flood scenarios. The 2003-04 Budget provides $14.5  million for work on these crossings.

A further $8.0  million has been made available for widening and reconstruction works on other sections of the Barkly Highway between Mt Isa and Camooweal.

Douglas Arterial Road

The Federal Government has committed an extra $4 million toward the construction of the Douglas Arterial Road as a Road of National Importance. $17.1 million will be provided in 2003-04 with the remaining $7.5 million of the $37.4 million Federal contribution to be paid in 2004-05. The Government's contribution is capped and the remainder of the $53.3  million cost of the project will be met by the Queensland Government.

The Douglas Arterial project includes 5.3km of new two-lane roadway between University Road and Upper Ross River Road. A new bridge over the Ross River and connections via on and off ramps to University Road, Angus Smith Drive and Upper Ross River Road will also be constructed.

The project is due for completion in February 2005.

Peninsula Development Road

Federal funding for upgrading the Peninsula Development Road commenced in 2002-03 and a further $1.0  million is being provided in 2003-04.

The Federal Government is committed to providing $5.0  million between 2002-03 and 2004-05 toward the upgrade of the section South of Kennedy Creek and from Coalseam Creek to Laura River.

These two sections are located on either side of an existing 4.7km stretch of sealed road and when finished will see sealed conditions extending for 16km to the south of Laura.

Local Roads

Local roads in Queensland will receive $149.2 million in 2003-04 from the Roads to Recovery Programme and untied Local Road Grants. The $1.2  billion Roads to Recovery Programme is the largest funding injection into local roads by any Federal Government.

Black Spot Programme

The Black Spot Programme provides funding to improve dangerous locations on roads other than the National Highway and declared Roads of National Importance. Queensland will receive $8.9  million in 2003-04 under the programme.