The Infrastructure Pipeline Report released on the 1st July has put forward sixteen priority proposals at various stages of development, with twelve of the proposals being considered for further development and four with investment consideration.
The infrastructure report by the independent organisation Building Queensland provides strategic advice on where the Queensland Government should prioritise and invest its infrastructure funds. Building Queensland's core functions are to: provide strategic advice on infrastructure matters, develop and publish infrastructure priority proposals, and play a role in the procurement and delivery of infrastructure projects.
The report declared Cross River Rail ready for state investment and the state government has responded, by agreeing to deliver the huge financial commitment of $800 million, towards building Queensland's number one infrastructure project.
The other three projects ready for government investment consideration are:
- Cunningham Highway - Yamanto Interchange to Ebenezer Creek
- European Train Control System (ETCS) - Inner City
- Pacific Motorway - Mudgeeraba to Varsity Lakes
Deputy Premier Jackie Trad said the delivery of the pipeline report was a major milestone in the government's commitment to remove politics from infrastructure planning, following the establishment of Building Queensland in December 2015. Premier Palaszczuk also commented that the investment was the biggest funding commitment to Cross River Rail by any government in its history.
“This builds on our recent commitment of $50 million in the 2016-17 state budget to establish the Cross River Rail Delivery Authority and commence early work, and $634 million funding to deliver the critical European Train Control System which will pave the way for the project,” said Ms Palaszczuk.
The Cross River Rail project is hoped to transform from a single piece of transport infrastructure into one of Australia's largest innovation and economic development initiatives; which in turn will encourage new development to enable the expanding population better access to jobs and schools.
Treasurer Curtis Pitt said the commitment of $800 million fits in with the priorities of the 2016 - 17 budget of growing innovation, attracting investment and building infrastructure. The Cross River Rail project is expected to support more than 1,540 construction jobs during the anticipated construction timeframe of five years, with the possibility of creating more than 7,700 jobs for Queenslanders.
Cross River Rail key points:
- support an additional 65,000 jobs
- support an additional 12,000 residents and more than 40,000 jobs in the CBD
- increase the proportion of the population in metropolitan Brisbane living within 30 minutes of employment from 15.2 per cent in 2015 to 20 per cent in 2026
- increase peak period rail capacity into the CBD by 56 percent, from 86 to 134 trains per hour
- reduces the number of people travelling to the CBD by car by 18,500 per day in 2036
- reduce the total wait time for train passengers by 11,000 hours per day in 2036
- increases the percentage of passengers in the region from 6.8 per cent currently to 10.4 per cent in 2036
- save the economy of $240 million annually in 2036 from road congestion
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