QLD set to receive massive $440 million from Federal Infrastructure Stimulus package

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Scott Morrison. Image Credit ABC

$440 million of federal infrastructure funding will be fast-tracked for vital Queensland projects.

Prime Minister Scott Morrison’s announcement this week regarding the fast-tracking of $3.8 billion over the next four years guarantees a boost in the Australian economy and will have a positive impact on local and state-based road infrastructure and employment opportunities.

As announced on Wednesday night, Queensland is set to have $440 million in infrastructure spending brought forward for major road infrastructure projects. This comes after the announcements of $415 million going to South Australia and $868 going to Western Australia. For Queensland, this deal fast-tracks a total of 20 projects by mid-2021 and also see more than $680 million in new funding assigned to major projects.

Projects to have existing funding brought forward:

  • Bruce Highway upgrades
  • Roads for Strategic Importance (ROSI) Initiative upgrades
  • M1 Pacific Motorway upgrades
  • North Coast Rail Line upgrade
  • Stage 3A of the Gold Coast Light Rail project
  • Warrego Highway upgrades
  • Cunningham Highway upgrades
  • Upgrades to the roads in the Hinkler Regional Deal
  • Examination of construction on the North Brisbane Bruce Highway Western Alternative

Projects receiving new funding:

  • National Network upgrades including M1
  • Stage 3A of the Gold Coast Light Rail project
  • Relocation of the Loganlea Station
  • Upgrades to interchanges on the M1 and upgrades to Exits 41 and 49
  • Contribution to planning of the Port of Brisbane connection
  • Contribution to the development of a business case for the Salisbury to Beaudesert rail line

The Queensland projects to be brought forward by fast-tracked federal spend

These projects will receive any existing federal funding immediately and will allow for upgrades of highways, motorways and railways in both regional and inner-city Queensland to commence this year.

Queensland Transport and Main Roads Minister Mark Bailey outlined that Queensland’s record budgets from the last four years supported these projects, but were awaiting federal backing: “Queensland’s money for those projects was already locked in, so now we can get on with them.”

Over the next 18 months the following projects will be brought forward due to this fast-track of federal funding:

One round of upgrades will improve on-ramps and interchanges on the Bruce Highway to increase capacity and reduce congestion. This will account for $225.6 million of the federal funding and will be used over the following stretches of the highway:

  • The Linkfield Road Overpass
  • The Pine River to Caloundra stretch
  • Stage 2 of the Mackay Ring Road
  • The Rockhampton Ring Road
  • Stage 5 of the Cairns Southern Access

$118.5 million of the governments existing funding will be brought forward to allow for upgrades on freight roads through the Roads of Strategic Importance (ROSI) initiative which will provide better connections and access from:

  • Cooktown to Weipa
  • Townsville to Roma
  • Toowoomba to Seymour (Queensland section) corridors
  • Shute Harbour Road

There has also been immediate funding flow of approximately $152 million for railway upgrades across the:

  • North Coast Rail Line between Beerburrum and Nambour
  • Completion of Stage 3A of the Gold Coast Light Rail project

There are also a number of projects that will receive existing funding over the next four years. These include:

  • M1 Pacific Motorway Upgrades with $94.3 million of existing federal government funding brought forward
  • Upgrades to the Warrego Highway with $22 million of existing funding brought forward
  • Upgrades to the Cunningham Highway with $27 million of existing federal government funding
  • Upgrades to the roads included in the Hinkler Regional Deal with $9 million of existing funding brought forward
  • Examine the current construction on the North Brisbane Bruce Highway Western Alternative with $7 million of existing federal government funding

Addition funding will also go to the $1.9 billion road and rail package

The PM will also provide additional funding as part of the $1.9 billion road and rail package given to Queensland. This will facilitate work on the following projects over the next four years:

The National Network and M1 upgrades

  • $400 million worth of funding will be given over the next two years to facilitate upgrades to interchanges and on-ramps particularly at Exits 41 and 49
  • This is on top of $91.4 million of existing federal funding

Stage 3A of the Gold Coast Light Rail project

  • Federal funding of $157 million will flow over the next four years creating over 760 construction jobs and will contribute to the reduction of motorway and highway congestion once the light rail project is complete
  • This builds on the $60 million existing federal funding and will be combined with the Queensland Government and Gold Coast City Council’s combined spending of approximately $440 million

Relocation of the Longanlea Station

  • $50 million of federal spending will be provided over 2020-2021 to move the station east of Loganlea Road to position it next to the hospital and TAFE campuses
  • This funding will be added to the Queensland Government's contribution of $45 million

M1 Interchange Upgrades at Exits 41 and 49

  • Immediate federal funding of $46.3 million will support improvements to both of the exits
  • This will lessen congestion and improve motorists journey’s

Contribution for the planning of the Port of Brisbane connection

  • $20 million in federal funding will be matched by the Queensland Government from 2020-21 to account for the total costs of the project on top of the planning
  • The project will connect rail freight with the port
  • It will reduce road congestion and increase road safety by limiting the amount of trucks that are currently used for haulage purposes in this area

Contribution for the development of a business case for the rail line between Salisbury to Beaudesert

  • The federal funding will span 2020-2021 and will amount to $10 million which will build on the Queensland Government’s $10 million contribution
  • The business case and planning of this project involves the identification and preservation of land that can be used for the Salisbury to Beaudesert Rail Corridor which will be used to expand passenger rail in this area

It is clear that this distribution of funding across Australia will contribute to a boost in our economy, particularly over the next four years. For Queensland, this partnership marks the beginning of a continued increase in job opportunities and stability, quicker and safer routes for motorists and all round high quality infrastructure throughout the state.

For more information on how the fast-tracked $3.8 billion of funding for infrastructure is being allocated across Australia, check out our other articles on The Flapping Mouth.

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