Jul 16, 2010

Ipswich Motorway upgrade moving forward

Ipswich Motorway upgrade moving forward

The Hon Anthony Albanese MP

The Minister for Infrastructure, Transport

Regional Development and Local Government

Leader of the House

Member for Grayndler

July 16 2010

Today I saw firsthand the significant progress that’s being made on the nation’s biggest Federally-funded road project, the upgrade of the Ipswich Motorway worth more than $2.5 billion.

Importantly, the rebuilding of this vital piece of road infrastructure remains on track to be completed in 2012.

While onsite I also took the opportunity to reaffirm Federal Labor’s pledge to never build the Goodna Bypass, a project the Federal Coalition remains committed to despite its cost and the disruption and uncertainty it would create in local communities.

As recently as October, the Shadow Transport Minister Warren Truss unambiguously told Federal Parliament:

“We would build the Goodna Bypass.”

This statement confirms the Federal Coalition has learnt nothing and is determined to repeat the mistakes of the past.

It also flies in the face of the significant progress we’ve made in less than three years on upgrading the existing Motorway. In fact thanks to our decision to bring forward funding as part of our Economic Stimulus Plan, work on the Wacol to Darra section was completed in April, nine months ahead of schedule.

Ditching the Howard Government’s Goodna Bypass was the right decision and we will not be going backwards.

The multibillion upgrade of the Ipswich Motorway is what our Nation Building Program is all about. It’s putting thousands of Queenslanders to work building the infrastructure which will ease urban congestion, improve the movement of freight and support the region’s growth for decades to come.

All up, almost 6,000 workers have so far been inducted on the Dinmore to Goodna site.

In recent weeks the builders – the Origin Alliance – have been working to secure the Motorway’s foundations by backfilling the old coal mines located beneath it.

Since coming to office, this Labor Government has lifted Federal investment in Queensland’s road and rail infrastructure by 126 per cent to an unprecedented $8.6 billion.