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    Coat of ArmsMedia Release
    JOINT STATEMENT
    Premier and Minister for the Arts
    The Honourable Annastacia Palaszczuk
    Deputy Premier, Minister for Infrastructure, Local Government and Planning and Minister for Trade and Investment
    The Honourable Jackie Trad

    Palaszczuk Government's vision for Townsville infrastructure released

    JOINT STATEMENT

    Premier and Minister for the Arts
    The Honourable Annastacia Palaszczuk

    Deputy Premier, Minister for Infrastructure, Local Government and Planning and Minister for Trade and Investment
    The Honourable Jackie Trad

    Sunday, March 13, 2016

    Palaszczuk Government's vision for Townsville infrastructure released

    Palaszczuk Government’s vision for Townsville infrastructure released

    The Palaszczuk Government today released Queensland’s first State Infrastructure Plan in more than three years, which will drive Townsville’s economy and deliver the infrastructure the region needs to grow and generate jobs.

    Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk said the long-term State Infrastructure Plan committed to significant reforms to the way Queensland plans, prioritises and invests in infrastructure, and it follows the establishment of Building Queensland as an independent infrastructure advisor to government and Market Led Proposals to encourage new private sector investment.

    “I made a commitment as Opposition Leader to ensure that Queensland once again had a statewide infrastructure plan, and today we deliver it,” the Premier said.

    Releasing the Plan today, Premier Palaszczuk and Deputy Premier and Minister for Infrastructure, Local Government and Planning Jackie Trad also announced the establishment of a new State Infrastructure Fund, with an initial investment of $500 million, including $125 million to fast-track the delivery of two projects for the Townsville region:

    • North Coast Line Capacity Improvement Project - $95 million.
    • Riverway Drive duplication, Townsville (Gollogly Lane – Allambie Lane) - $30m.

    “These two projects are critical to improving the efficiency of road and rail freight in the region, and will support around 350 jobs during construction,” Ms Trad said.

    “Also as part of the State Infrastructure Fund, we’ve allocated $180 million for a ‘Significant Regional Infrastructure Projects Program’, which will deliver regionally significant infrastructure projects identified by communities for communities.

    “Through this Program, we want to hear from regional communities about the infrastructure projects which will address a community need or stimulate additional economic and job growth for their area.

    “We will soon begin work to identify how this $180 million investment can be used most effectively to deliver jobs and grow Queensland’s economy after the resources boom.”

    Ms Trad said the State Infrastructure Plan outlined a clear, four-year pipeline of projects to provide the private sector with the confidence to invest in people and resources by knowing what projects will be in market when.

    “Providing the private sector with a transparent pipeline of work is vitally important, particularly after the LNP failed to deliver a single infrastructure plan during their three years in government,” Ms Trad said.

    “Through the SIP, the Townsville region now has an infrastructure blueprint and a clear four-year pipeline of work that will meet the future demands of the area’s population, and deliver economic growth and jobs year after year.”

    Other projects for the Townsville region over the next four years include:

    • Townsville primary school and planning for new secondary school
    • Bruce Highway Townsville Ring Road Section 4
    • Port of Townsville - Berth 4 Upgrade
    • Bruce Highway Yellow Gin Creek Bridge upgrade
    • Support development of the North Queensland Stadium.

    Additionally, the plan clearly outlines the government’s commitment to fast-track $210 million in shovel-ready projects to support more than 486 jobs in the Townsville region as part of its Accelerated Works Program, which is already underway 

    Minister Assisting the Premier on North Queensland and Local Member for Mundingburra Coralee O’Rourke welcomed the announcement of the State Infrastructure Plan and $125 million funding boost, which would deliver significant economic and job growth for the Townsville region.

    “Through this State Infrastructure Plan, and our ongoing Accelerated Works Program, we are committed to generating jobs for the Townsville region and helping the workforce transition following the resources boom,” Ms O’Rourke said.

    “A transparent, four-year pipeline of work is fantastic news for Townsville and will give the private sector the confidence to invest in our people, plant and equipment.”

    “I particularly welcome the $125 million in funding through the State Infrastructure Fund which will deliver much needed upgrades to Riverway Drive and the North Coast rail line, and support 350 jobs for our region – a boost that could not come at a better time.”

    Local Member for Townsville Scott Stewart welcomed the State Infrastructure Plan, and looked forward to seeing the $95 million North Coast Line Capacity Improvement Project get underway.

    “The North Coast rail line is a vital freight connection for North Queensland which carries minerals, sugar and molasses and containerised freight,” Mr Harper said.

    “This $95 million project will upgrade the capacity of the North Coast rail line to increase the productivity and efficiency of freight transport on the corridor and accommodate growth in demand,” Mr Harper said.

    Local Member for Thuringowa Aaron Harper said he was pleased to see the Townsville region prioritised through the plan, in particular the $30 million funding boost which would bring the Riverway Drive duplication project to life.

    “This $30 million project will involve the duplication of a 3 kilometre section of Riverway Drive, between Gollogly and Allambie Lane, including the installation of central medians, signalised intersections, and pedestrian crossings,” Mr Harper said.

    “This project will significantly ease congestion for the more than 18,900 vehicles that travel this road daily, in addition to improving access to local businesses and homes and the safety of pedestrians and cyclists.”

    “I am proud to be part of a government that is working with local members to achieve the best outcomes for communities and especially proud to be able to announce the Riverway Drive duplication, after more than a year of working hard to get this project up and running,” Mr Harper said.

    The long-term State Infrastructure Plan also outlines significant reforms to the way Queensland plans, prioritises and invests in infrastructure, and follows the establishment of Building Queensland as an independent infrastructure advisor to government and Market Led Proposals to encourage new private sector investment.

    Other key reform measures outlined in the State Infrastructure Plan include:

    • Establishing an Infrastructure Cabinet Committee to drive infrastructure coordination and development
    • Establishing an Infrastructure Portfolio Office to coordinate and integrate state government infrastructure, land-use and economic planning
    • Developing five new strategic infrastructure network plans for Transport, Water, Energy, Digital and Social infrastructure
    • Enhancing the government’s ability to fund and finance infrastructure through a focus on value capture and improving alternative funding and financing options in Queensland
    • Reviewing fragmented local government infrastructure grants programs to optimise prioritisation; and
    • Establishing a joint industry/government Infrastructure Innovation Taskforce, and a Community Infrastructure Reference Group to provide thought leadership through a prioritised program of work.

    For more information or to view the State Infrastructure Plan visit dilgp.qld.gov.au/SIP

    ENDS

    Media Contact:  Deputy Premier’s Office - 0488 996 667