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Extra funds for Pacific and Hume Highways delivered.



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MEDIA RELEASE The Hon Warren Truss MP Minister for Transport and Regional Services

30 June 2006 103WT/2006 Joint

Joint Media Statement

The Hon Warren Truss MP Minister for Transport and Regional Services

The Hon Eric Roozendaal New South Wales Minister for Roads

EXTRA FUNDS FOR PACIFIC AND HUME HIGHWAYS DELIVERED

The Australian and New South Wales Governments have signed a Memorandum of Understanding for major new road works on the Hume and Pacific Highways.

The Australian Government Minister for Transport and Regional Services, Warren Truss, and the New South Wales Roads Minister, Eric Roozendaal, said today's deal would result in a major escalation of works on both highways and help deliver better quality roads between major New South Wales centres.

On the Pacific Highway, the Australian and New South Wales Governments will contribute an additional $160 million each.

This brings to $1.3 billion the level of funding the two Governments have committed to upgrading the Pacific Highway till the end of 2009 under new agreements negotiated in the last 12 months.

More than $2.3 billion has been spent by both governments over the past 10 years upgrading the Pacific Highway in projects that have made an enormous difference to the NSW economy, North Coast communities and NSW road users.

The funding is coming from the AusLink National Transport Plan which was boosted to $15 billion in the recent Federal Budget. The new money will be paid to the New South Wales Government this week.

Mr Truss said the new works are due to be completed by December 2009.

"Completion of a four-lane highway system linking Melbourne, Sydney and Brisbane by 2016 is a vital national objective," Mr Truss said.

Mr Roozendaal welcomed the extra funding for both the Pacific and Hume Highways and supported the aim of accelerating the completion of dual carriageways.

"These projects are about improving road safety and reducing transport costs in NSW, bringing enormous economic benefits to the State," Mr Roozendaal said.

Mr Roozendaal said the extra $320 million in joint funding for the Pacific Highway would be spent on a 22km duplication between Moorland and Herons Creek, which is between Taree and Port Macquarie, as well as safety works on other sections of the highway.

"A range of major safety projects on unduplicated sections of the Pacific Highway will also be completed around Nambucca Heads, between Grafton and Ballina, including

URL: http://www.ministers.dotars.gov.au/wtr/releases/2006/June/103WT_2006.htm

Tabbimobile and Shark Creek," Mr Roozendaal said.

"Deaths and major injuries have occurred at a number of these sites as a result of recent crashes.

"Together with other works under way or about to start, our two governments will deliver continuous four-lane highway conditions for a distance of 330km north of Sydney to Port Macquarie within four years," Mr Roozendaal said.

The Australian Government allocated an additional $800 million in the recent Federal Budget for works on the Hume Highway. Funding for the Hume Highway in the five years 2004-05 to 2008-09 is now $1.4 billion.

Mr Truss said that on the Hume Highway, about 108km of the route in New South Wales remains as two-lane road.

The new funding was aimed at completing the following projects by the end of 2009:

Ñ four lanes from the northern end of the Albury Wodonga upgrade (including a

major deviation) to south of Woomargama; Ñ four lanes over the Little Billabong section (between Holbrook and Tarcutta);

Ñ Kyeamba Hill duplication, providing the missing link between two sections already

duplicated; and Ñ duplication north of both Tarcutta and Holbrook.

Mr Truss said these upgrades will leave only about 20km of the Hume Highway in southern New South Wales as a two-lane road by 2010.

"Planning, consultation and environmental assessments for the remaining works - namely bypasses at Tarcutta, Holbrook and Woomargama - will be completed as soon as possible so that construction will be ready to proceed in 2009-10," he said.

Media Contacts

Kylie Butler ( Mr Truss's office ) 02 6277 7680 / 0417 652 488

Patrick Mühlen-Schulte ( Mr Roozendaals office ) 02 9228 3535 / 0403 141 300