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Tuesday, 19 November 2013
Page: 657

Road Infrastructure

Mr WILLIAMS (Hindmarsh) (15:10): My question is to the Assistant Minister for Infrastructure and Regional Development. Is the minister aware that a recent South Australian Royal Automobile Association travel time report revealed that the average travel time speeds along sections of South Road during peak periods have reduced to 21 kilometres an hour in the morning and 29 kilometres an hour in the afternoon? What is the government's plan to upgrade the entire South Road corridor and reduce travel times for commuters in my electorate of Hindmarsh?

Mr BRIGGS (MayoAssistant Minister for Infrastructure and Regional Development) (15:10): Congratulations to the new member for Hindmarsh for an outstanding maiden speech yesterday. It is great that the western suburbs of Adelaide have finally got some good Liberal representation after all these years. Madam Speaker, as you are well aware, the Prime Minister will be, at the end of his term, the infrastructure Prime Minister. That is the intention of the Prime Minister and we will make sure that he is the infrastructure Prime Minister during his term.

Yesterday we talked about the WestConnex project in Sydney and its importance to the people of Western Sydney in particular in Australia's premier city. Today we talk about the north-south corridor project and particularly for those in Hindmarsh affected by this, being in the most liveable city in Australia. We want to make the north-south corridor a reality as soon as we possibly can. We are not just going to talk about it; we are going to deliver on it. In the election campaign we committed to $500 million to upgrade the Darlington Interchange. I noticed yesterday that the former minister—

Mr Albanese interjecting

Mr BRIGGS: who longs to be back on this side of the House, was critical of the government standing by its election promise. I know it is an unusual concept for the Labor Party, but we announced $500 million for Darlington in the campaign and we are going to deliver $500 million for Darlington. I know for the Labor Party that is a very unusual thing to happen. In October at the South Australian Liberal Party conference the Prime Minister, in what was an ambitious announcement, said that this government, the Abbott government, will deliver an entire north-south corridor upgrade in our term in government.

Ms Rishworth interjecting

Ms Kate Ellis interjecting

Mr BRIGGS: I am surprised that the member for Kingston and the member for Adelaide are so opposed to this. I am surprised that their constituents would be so opposed. I understand the member for Kingston is very disappointed that her own party would not commit to the Darlington Interchange, but we will commit to the Darlington Interchange and we will get the Torrens-to-Torrens work underway. We will continue to ensure—what's wrong, Albo?

Mr Albanese: Speaker, I rise on a point of order on relevance. The minister was asked about South Road. In order to be relevant he has to explain why he stopped work on the Torrens-to-Torrens section, which is already under construction.

The SPEAKER: Good try, but there is no point of order. I call the minister.

Mr BRIGGS: He is increasingly looking like one of those Japanese troops who were left on an island, forgetting that the war was over. The war is over, Albo! We put a proposition to the electorate and they supported ours.

Ms Rishworth: It's never going to happen!

Mr BRIGGS: It is a surprise that the member for Kingston would not support the southern suburbs of Adelaide, I must say. I am not surprised the member for Adelaide and the member for Port Adelaide do not support it, but the member for Kingston? We will deliver the north-south corridor. The infrastructure Prime Minister will ensure that the north-south corridor is upgraded for the benefit of South Australia and the people of Australia. We will be a government that is open for business under the infrastructure Prime Minister.