NSW Election: who's promising what in roads and transport?
With a State Election little more than a month away, both sides of NSW politics are ramping up their spending commitments and highlighting their achievements on roads and transport.
The following is a quick recap of some of the key commitments and initiatives voters will be asked to consider on March 23.
On the Government side, in addition to standing on its record of delivering WestConnex and Metro Northwest and commencing work on Sydney Metro City and Southwest, it remains committed to:
- the F6 extension in Sydney's south, starting with Stage One from Arncliffe to Kogarah ($2.6 million)
- the Western Harbour Tunnel and Beaches Link, a 14-km motorway tunnel linking Sydney's northern beaches and inner west (Rozelle)
- Sydney Gateway, a new motorway connection between the New M5 Interchange at St Peters and the Airport and Port precinct, including the relocation and reconfiguration of Airport Drive, major upgrades to Qantas Drive and Joyce Drive, and the duplication of the Port Botany Freight Rail Line
- Sydney Metro West, a new metro line from Westmead to the Sydney CBD
- $500 million to repair and replace timber bridges in rural and regional communities
- $480 million for the Mamre and Mulgoa road upgrades in western Sydney
- $182 million for road safety upgrades across the State during the next financial year that will include the delivery of 224 new projects
- 13 new public transport routes in remote regional areas
- investigating a regional high speed rail network
On the Opposition side, the major commitments include:
- $8 billion to fast-track the Western Metro (Parramatta to Sydney CBD) and $3 billion to improve Sydney’s existing rail network
- scrapping of the proposed F6 motorway between Arncliffe and Kogarah (Stage One), Beaches Link Motorway, and the Sydenham to Bankstown section of Sydney Metro
- $1 billion into train station upgrades and commuter car parks
- expanding the roads Pinch Point Program to $1.1 billion
- $10 million for preliminary work on a rapid transport link between the new Western Sydney Airport and Liverpool
- an additional $900 million over five years to improve safety and productivity on rural and regional NSW roads
- hand back to the community 18 hectares along the WestConnex corridor not required for operational purposes
- re-introduction of the Cashback Scheme on the M4
- a mandated target of 50 per cent local content for major ($50m+) State Government contracts
2019 Infrastructure Priority List presents record $58bn project pipeline
Another 25 initiatives have made their way onto the Infrastructure Australia priority list over the past year - a clear recognition that road and rail are equally integral to our transport future.
Infrastructure Australia last week released its 2019 Infrastructure Priority List, presenting 121 nationally significant infrastructure proposals and a $58 billion project.
Developed using data from the Australian Infrastructure Audit and submissions from state and territory governments, industry and the community, including more than 100 submissions in the last year, the 2019 Priority List provides all levels of government with a list of infrastructure investment opportunities for the near, medium and longer term.
Infrastructure Australia Chair, Julieanne Alroe said a number of inclusions on this year’s Priority List focussed on getting the most out of existing infrastructure through the use of smart technology, such as Intelligent Transport Systems.
This includes projects such as the Monash Freeway Upgrade Stage 2 and North East Link in Victoria, the Regency Road to Pym Street section of Adelaide’s North–South Corridor, and a proposal to improve the performance and efficiency of motorways in the Sydney CBD.
The 2019 List also identifies regional road safety improvements as a national priority, with Ms Alroe calling on governments to prioritise investment in high-risk sections of regional roads across Australia.
She added that many of this year’s new additions reflected the need for forward-thinking, ambitious solutions to support Australia’s future prosperity – such as the delivery of a national electric vehicle fast- charging network, which has been identified as a High Priority Initiative.
“Technological change is driving significant shifts in infrastructure demand. The advent of electric vehicles, along with automation, growth in the ‘sharing economy’ and technological connectivity, could bring the largest transformation the transport sector has seen since the shift from steam to diesel locomotives,” Ms Alroe said.
The February 2019 Infrastructure Priority List is available at www.infrastructureaustralia.gov.au.