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Monday, 6 December 1993
Page: 3855

Senator TIERNEY (3.36 p.m.) —by leave—I move:

  That the Senate take note of the answer given by the Minister for Transport and Communications (Senator Collins), to a question without notice asked by Senator West this day, relating to the extension of the F3 Freeway linking Sydney and Newcastle.

Last week I joined with Senator Collins in the opening of the latest stage of the F3 freeway which completes the link into Newcastle. It was a great occasion and it has achieved a lot but, in his response today, Senator Collins was very misleading in claiming that this road is finished. Certainly, the completion of the latest link—19 kilometres of road linking into the centre of Newcastle—has done and will continue to do a great deal for the trade and commerce of the city, particularly as it knocks 15 minutes off the travelling time between Sydney and Newcastle.

  I would like to point out to the Senate that this road is by no means finished. As a matter of fact, quite an incredible gap now exists in the national highway system just north of Newcastle. At the end of the F3 there is an eight kilometre gap through to the Pacific Highway and to the New England Highway. The government's plan is that this road link will not be completed for 10 to 20 years. In the meantime, an enormous traffic snarl will occur, particularly at Christmas time. I invite Senator Collins to come up a few days before Christmas and see what happens at the end of the F3.

Senator Collins —This is an interesting comparison with what you said at the opening you'd say in the Senate.

Senator TIERNEY —Yes, exactly. I have just complimented Senator Collins for that bit. I also said that I would say in the Senate that this road is not finished; his government has not carried out the necessary planning for that link because there is an eight kilometre gap to two major highways of this state. It is time his government really got moving and completed this very necessary link into the New England Highway and the Pacific Highway.

  Question resolved in the affirmative.