Feb 22, 2019

Media Release – Coalition Must Use Budget to Back Cross River Rail – Friday, 22 February, 2019

The Morrison Government must back Brisbane’s Cross River Rail project in the Budget in April to give Queenslanders the certainty of Federal support for this critical infrastructure project.

Federal Labor has already committed $2.24 billion for Cross River Rail, which will boost the capacity of the entire South-East Queensland rail network by providing a second rail crossing of the Brisbane River in the city’s central business district.

But the Abbott-Turnbull-Morrison Government has refused to invest, despite Infrastructure Australia rating the project the nation’s highest infrastructure priority in 2012.

On the basis of that independent advice the former Labor Government allocated funding in the 2013 Budget, only to see it cancelled by the incoming Abbott Government, which refused to invest in public transport anywhere in the nation.

This policy blunder has contributed to a worsening of traffic congestion in South-East Queensland.

The upcoming Budget presents an opportunity for Prime Minister Scott Morrison to do the right thing and provide funding to partner with the Palaszczuk State Government and deliver the project.

Traffic congestion is eroding our quality of life and acting as a handbrake on productivity and economic growth.

Without transformative projects like Cross River Rail, the economic cost of traffic congestion in Brisbane and across South East Queensland will increase almost five-fold to $9.2 billion a year by as early as 2031.

A Shorten Labor Government will deliver Cross River Rail to ensure the Queensland economy can continue to thrive and to protect and enhance the state’s wonderful quality of life.

Mr Morrison must get on board.