Mar 3, 2009

$9 million worth of rest areas under new deal

$9 million worth of rest areas under new deal

MEDIA RELEASE

The Hon Anthony Albanese MP

The Minister for Infrastructure, Transport,

Regional Development and Local Government

Leader of the House

Member for Grayndler

March 3 2009

Five new rest areas will be built and another eight upgraded between Adelaide to Port Augusta under a new deal between the Australian and South Australian Governments.

Federal Transport Minister Anthony Albanese today joined State Transport Minister Patrick Conlon in Adelaide and outlined the 13 priority areas to be funded in 2008-09 and 2009-10.

“The Australian government will provide $4.5 million from its Heavy Vehicle Safety and Productivity program to upgrade rest areas on the Adelaide to Port Augusta section of the National Network to meet national guideline requirement,” Mr Albanese said.

“This means more places for heavy vehicle drivers to stop and rest, providing vital road safety outcomes and better working conditions for these men and women.”

The State Government will also contribute $4.5 million to the upgrade of rest areas, with $1.2 million of works already being completed in 2007-08. The remaining $3.3 million will also go towards upgrading rest areas on the Adelaide to Port Augusta section of Highway.

Ministers Albanese and Conlon made the announcement while inspecting the new $8 million purpose built asphalt plant for the Northern Expressway – the State’s biggest road project in half a century and a generator of over 1,600 jobs (85 in the plant itself).

Central to the efficient delivery of the $564 million joint Federal and State funded project, the new on-site asphalt plant will generate the 450,000 tonnes of asphalt required for the expressway.

The State Government has invested $1 million to provide gas to the site, preventing the need for diesel technology and resulting in a far more environmentally friendly way to manufacture asphalt.

Between now and April 2010 the plant will produce around 250 tonnes of asphalt per hour.

The first of 450,000 tonnes of asphalt will be laid over the next couple of months on the section of the expressway north of Two Wells Road.

“The work here is just another example of the unprecedented progress South Australia is making on transport infrastructure,” Mr Conlon said.

“To see the alignment of this massive project emerging to a point where soon we will be laying asphalt is a fantastic achievement and further evidence that South Australia is bucking the international trend.”

A four lane, two-way road, the Northern Expressway will link the upgraded Sturt Highway at the Gawler Bypass with Port Wakefield Road, just north of Waterloo Corner Road.

A joint initiative of the Australian and South Australian Governments, the Northern Expressway is expected to be completed and open to traffic by December 2010.

For further information regarding the Northern Expressway project and opportunities for community interaction log on to www.northernexpressway.sa.gov.au.