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    Coat of ArmsMedia Release
    Premier and Minister for the Arts
    The Honourable Anna Bligh
    Minister for Transport
    The Honourable Rachel Nolan

    More than half a billion dollars worth of busway to open for business


    Premier and Minister for the Arts
    The Honourable Anna Bligh

    Minister for Transport
    The Honourable Rachel Nolan

    Sunday, August 02, 2009

    More than half a billion dollars worth of busway to open for business


    Premier Anna Bligh and Transport Minister Rachel Nolan have opened the first two east-west sections of Brisbane’s rapidly expanding busway network to the public at a community day attended by thousands of Queenslanders.

    Ms Bligh said the $366 million worth of new infrastructure, comprising the Boggo Road Busway and Stage One of the Eastern Busway, will take up to 450 buses off the road every day and up to 10,000 passengers will use the busway daily.

    “These two projects combined now link the Eleanor Schonell Bridge to the South East Busway at Buranda station and provide yet another vital link in our Busway network,” said Ms Bligh.

    Stage one of the $198 million Northern Busway will open at the same time as the Boggo Road and Eastern Busway projects meaning more than half a billion dollars worth of congestion-busting infrastructure will be delivered simultaneously.

    “This infrastructure is ahead of schedule and bang on budget,” said Premier Anna Bligh.

    “This Boggo Road Busway and Stage One of the Eastern Busway add 2.1 km to our expanding network.

    “Combined with the 1.2 km of Northern Busway, these projects brings the total length of Busways in Brisbane to 24km.”

    The Premier said the new sections of busway would cut almost 10 minutes off travel time and cut out seven sets of traffic lights for buses.

    "But combined with the entire network they also mean that passengers who are now using roads to get to Queensland University could cut up to 40 minutes off their journey time if they switch to public transport,” she said.

    "For example someone driving from Eight Mile Plains to the university in peak hour would face a journey of more than an hour but using the busway network they can now do the trip in 22 minutes flat without even changing buses.”

    The latest link in the network means that passengers will now be able to travel from University of Queensland at St Lucia to Buranda, then link up with the South East Busway into the city and then out to the Royal Brisbane and Women’s Hospital at Windsor.

    “So for tens of thousands of regular public transport users this means traffic jams will become a distant memory,” said the Premier.

    “We want as many people as possible to switch to public transport. For that to happen we know we need to provide a world-class service.

    “We’ve already seen patronage grow by almost 50 per cent in the past five years across southeast Queensland as the busway network has expanded to meet this challenge. Our record $18.2 billion capital building program means services and infrastructure will only continue to improve.”

    The Boggo Road Busway includes a 640m-long underground section, making it the longest busway tunnel in Australia.

    “The tunnel passes just six metres under the heritage-listed Boggo Road Gaol and the workers did a wonderful job completing the job without any damage to this important building,” said Ms Bligh.

    The busway includes a new station at Princess Alexandra Hospital and the new Boggo Road busway station located adjacent to the Park Road rail station.

    “There is also a 920-metre shared cycleway that provides cyclists and pedestrians better access to the South East Freeway Bikeway as well as the Eleanor Schonell Bridge and University of Queensland,” said the Premier.

    Ms Bligh said Queensland’s record $18.2 billion capital building program meansthe Busway network would continue to expand.

    “Construction will start within weeks on the next section of the Eastern Busway, which will connect the Buranda busway station to new busway stations at Stones Corner and Langlands Park in Coorparoo,” she said.

    “This new 1.05km stage 2 of the Eastern Busway, from Buranda to Main Avenue, is expected to create up to 2839 jobs and that is incredibly important during these difficult economic times.”

    Transport Minister Rachel Nolan said the Eastern Busway was connecting one of the largest traffic generators in South East Queensland ­– the University of Queensland.

    “Approximately 33,000 students and staff access the University of Queensland,” Ms Nolan said.

    “The Princess Alexandra Hospital (PAH), is the second-largest hospital in the state and has almost 12,000 patients, visitors and staff travelling to and from the hospital each day.

    “This new busway offers a link from the South East Busway to a three-storey station at PAH, with a covered pedestrian link direct to the central reception area of the hospital.

    “These connections are an integral part of the Queensland Government’s long-term plan to meet the transport needs of South East Queensland, by providing more frequent and reliable bus services and active transport options to better connect people and places.”

    Ms Nolan said the Boggo Road busway station had a walkway to the forthcoming Boggo Road Urban Village (under construction) and the Park Road railway station.

    “This means commuters can change modes of transport and catch a train to the city, the Brisbane Airport, Gold Coast, Beenleigh or Cleveland,” she said.

    Ms Bligh and Ms Nolan said they thanked the local residents and the community for their patience and understanding during construction.

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