Mar 19, 2014

Hunter Expressway to open

Labor welcomes Saturday’s opening of the Hunter Expressway, the largest ever infrastructure project in the Hunter region.

This project is a game changer for the Hunter.

The new four-lane, 40km road will improve road safety, boost productivity, create jobs, and ease congestion.

It will cut travel time between Newcastle and the Hunter Valley by 25 minutes.

Federal Labor funded the project in the 2009-10 Budget at a cost of $1.5 billion, as part of its economic stimulus plan. The NSW Government contributed $200 million.

Coalition MPs who opposed the economic stimulus plan in the Parliament will be among those lining up to celebrate the opening this weekend.

I am delighted with their about-turn in support of the local community.

Given the government’s strong track record lately renaming Labor Government funded projects as their own, I eagerly await the unveiling of the plaque to see if the Coalition will waste more money on another name change.

The people of the Hunter including the residents of Maitland, Cessnock, Branxton and many communities in between deserve to celebrate the opening of the Expressway they campaigned for.