May 11, 2010

Victoria continues to benefit from record investment

Victoria continues to benefit from record investment

The Hon Anthony Albanese MP

The Minister for Infrastructure, Transport

Regional Development and Local Government

Leader of the House

Member for Grayndler

May 11 2010

The Rudd Labor Government’s unprecedented investment in the road and rail infrastructure within Victoria continues unabated, with a further $1 billion being provided in the 2010-11 Budget.

The aim of our infrastructure building program is simple: to build more sustainable communities and a more productive national economy, one positioned to take full advantage of the global economic recovery.

In the case of Victoria, we’ve boosted spending on roads and on rail by 181 per cent over the life of the current Nation Building Program (2008-09 to 2013-14), bringing our total investment to $7.9 billion.

These major investments in Victorian infrastructure is part of the Rudd Government’s plan to strengthen our economy so we can face the future with confidence.

The 2010-11 Budget continues the rollout of this unprecedented investment.

During the coming financial year (2010-11), work will start on a range of major road and rail projects including:

  • Kings Road Interchange (Calder Freeway) – scheduled for completion in 2012.
  • Geelong Ring Road 4B – scheduled for completion in 2014.
  • Duplication of the Princes Highway from Waurn Ponds to Winchelsea – scheduled for completion in 2014.
  • Development of the Wimmera Intermodal Terminal at Dooen – scheduled for completion in 2011-12

The 2010-11 Budget provides a new equity injection of $142 million to allow the Australian Rail Track Corporation to re-rail the line between Albury, Melbourne and Geelong and install four new passing loops between Gheringhap and Maroona to increase the capacity and reduce the transit times of the Victorian freight rail network.

Communities across Victoria will benefit from the completion in 2010-11 of the following major projects:

  • Geelong Ring Road 4A.
  • Westgate Bridge
  • Wodonga Rail By-pass

We will also continue funding a range of initiatives designed to make our highways and local roads safer:

  • $13.6 million to eliminate another 65 dangerous black spots on local roads;
  • $1.1 million to deliver more safe, modern roadside facilities for truck drivers, including new and refurbished rest stops, parking bays and decoupling areas.

The 2010-11 Budget also provides $202.5 million to assist councils and shires in Victoria maintain and upgrade their local roads of which $32.5 million has been brought forward into 2009-10.

As well as building and modernising the transport infrastructure vital to Australia’s long term productivity and prosperity, our $37 billion Nation Building Program helped shield the Victorian economy from the worst of last year’s global recession.

Within Victoria, as well as across the country, the Rudd Labor Government is building a national road network and an interstate rail system equal to the needs of the 21st century.