May 21, 2013

Federal Budget delivers for Mackay

Today I inspected progress on the Bruce Highway upgrade just south of Mackay and released the preferred route for the City’s future Ring Road, all part of the record capital works program currently underway along this vital road.

On track to be completed later this year, the $50 million, fully-Federally funded project is duplicating the Highway between Temples Lane and Farrelly’s Road.  The upgrade of the nearby intersections and the widening of the section between Farrelly’s and Boundary roads have already been completed.

These improvements will deliver faster, less congested driving conditions for the 15,000 motorists that use this 3.8 kilometre section of highway every day.

As well as addressing Mackay’s immediate infrastructure needs, we are also planning and building for its future.  That’s why today I also released the preferred route for the Ring Road and invited the local community to have their say by 19 June.

We are determined to get on with the job of delivering this long-talked about project, and once the community’s feedback has been considered, I would urge the Queensland Government to move quickly to finalise both the route and the business case.

This planning work is being fully funded by the Federal Labor Government.

In addition to the Ring Road, last week’s Federal Budget also locked in funding to widen the Bruce Highway from four to six lanes between the northern end of Ron Camm Bridge and north of Mackay Bucasia Road near the Davey Street overpass.

Federal Labor is delivering real money for real projects that will make a real difference.

We understand that infrastructure matters, and in Queensland there is no more important road than the Bruce Highway.  And while progress over the last five years has been substantial, we have always said it would take more than one or two parliamentary terms to fix the years of neglect.

That’s why we have released a ten-year, blueprint detailing the next round of targeted improvements and committed $5.7 billion to improving safety, cutting travel times, easing congestion and improving the Highway’s flood immunity.  That’s more than four times what the Howard Government spent over a similar period of time.

When it comes to the Bruce Highway, Labor always delivers more than the LNP.