May 18, 2011

Budget delivers Yeppen roundabout & bridge upgrade

Budget delivers Yeppen roundabout & bridge upgrade

The Hon Anthony Albanese MP

Minister for Infrastructure & Transport

Leader of the House

Member for Grayndler

18 May 2011

Today I joined local MP Kirsten Livermore to confirm that the funding necessary to upgrade the intersection between the Bruce and Capricorn Highways was allocated in last week’s Federal Budget, clearing the way for construction to begin within the next twelve months.

Federal Infrastructure and Transport Minister Anthony Albanese said the multi-million upgrade was a key pledge by the Gillard Labor Government during last year’s election campaign and one of seven new Queensland-based projects commissioned in the 2011-12 Budget.

“When it comes to infrastructure, Federal Labor means what it says and does what it promises,” said Mr Albanese.

“Located just south of Rockhampton, the intersection between the Bruce and Capricorn Highways has in recent years acquired a poor safety record and become increasingly congested with over 12,000 vehicles a day passing through it.

“Without the action we’re now taking the inadequacies of this important piece of infrastructure are only likely to become more obvious in the years ahead, particularly given the number of large resource developments planned for the region.

“Indeed projects like this – and the new Minerals Resource Rent Tax we’re putting in place to fund them – are all about positioning Central Queensland to take full advantage of the next mining boom.”

Jointly funded by Gillard ($40 million) and Bligh ($10 million) Labor Government, the project will add an additional lane to the roundabout and construct a new slip lane from the Capricorn to the Bruce Highway as well as erect a new, higher two lane bridge across the Yeppen Lagoon.

It will also raise the approaches to both the bridge and the roundabout, a timely improvement given both were inundated during last summer’s floods.

Ms Livermore said confirmation work on this long awaited project will start soon is a tribute to the local community’s persistent campaign for better infrastructure.

“I am proud to be part of a Gillard Labor Government that’s delivering on our election commitment in full,” said Ms Livermore.

“This is a very important project for the region and will help make sure the mums and dads of Gracemere are able to spend more time with their families and less time stuck in traffic.”