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Wednesday, 24 July 2019
Page: 879

Infrastructure: Roads


Ms STEGGALL (Warringah) (14:19): My question is to the Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Infrastructure, Transport and Regional Development. Warringah has some of the most congested roads in Australia and it is a huge detriment to people's daily lives. A proposed solution, the Beaches Link tunnel, would improve congestion by bypassing the Spit Bridge, which creates a bottleneck between the Northern Beaches and the Lower North Shore. The proposed Beaches Link tunnel has been talked about for over two decades, including by the former member for Warringah, and is now in the New South Wales planning and assessment process. During the campaign, the federal government committed $50 million from the Urban Congestion Fund to improve access to the tunnel from Balgowlah. Can the minister please tell the House what has happened to that $50 million commitment?


Mr McCORMACK (RiverinaDeputy Prime Minister, Minister for Infrastructure, Transport and Regional Development and Leader of The Nationals) (14:20): We stand by all our commitments that we make. The difference between this side and that side is that, when we promise something, we actually deliver. We're delivering $100 billion in infrastructure over the next 10 years. That's a decade-long pipeline of investment in infrastructure.

Certainly when it comes to busting through congestion—and I will get the Minister for Urban Infrastructure to add to my remarks—we added $3 billion in the last budget to busting through that congestion, particularly for capital cities, and making sure that people can get home sooner and safer. If you live in the cities, if you work in the cities and, indeed, if you visit the cities, the one thing that you don't want to be spending too much time on is looking at the brake lights in front of you.

I look forward to working with the member for Warringah to make sure that we develop infrastructure in her electorate, as we do for all electorates. It doesn't matter what political persuasion people are, we want to make sure that we have the infrastructure that meets the needs of Australians, whether they live in urban areas or whether they live in regional areas. I will ask the Minister for Urban Infrastructure to add to those comments.

The SPEAKER: I give the call to the Minister for Urban Infrastructure.



Mr TUDGE (AstonMinister for Population, Cities and Urban Infrastructure) (14:22): I thank the member for her question. As the Deputy Prime Minister said, we are committed to every single one of the commitments that we made at the election, including the one that you referred to. In fact, we are in negotiations, as we speak, with the New South Wales government over every single project, just as we are with every other project around the country.

In New South Wales, we have provided almost $33 billion of infrastructure to that state since we have come to office. That included, just in the last budget, an additional $7.3 billion. The member would know that one of those major projects, which is coming to fruition now, is the NorthConnex project, which members of her electorate will be beneficiaries of as will constituents of the member for Bennelong's electorate and other electorates in the northern suburbs of Sydney—for example, the member for Berowra's electorate.

There are also a number of other urban congestion-busting projects that we'll be rolling out over the months and years ahead. That includes $50 million for the King Georges Road upgrade, in the member for Banks's electorate. That includes another $4.5 million for the Blaxland Road-Balaclava Road intersection improvements; $4 million for the Princes Highway and Waratah Street intersection upgrade;. $95 million for the Horsley Drive upgrade—which I know that the shadow minister, the member for McMahon, is interested in; and $50 million for Homebush Bay Drive. I could go on almost all afternoon listing the projects which we are rolling out to bust congestion and make sure— (Time expired)