Labor to invest in Victorian roads

June 22, 2016

A Shorten Labor Government will tackle traffic congestion in Melbourne and lift the capacity of Victoria’s rail freight network and regional roads.

Working in partnership with the Andrews Labor Government, federal Labor’s Melbourne Roads Package and Regional Victoria Transport Package will boost productivity right across the state after three years of Liberal neglect.

Labor’s Melbourne Roads Package will include:

§  $262 million for works on roads in growth areas of outer Melbourne, including Thompsons Road, O’Herns Road, Craigieburn Road and Bridge Inn Road.

§  $510 million to improve efficiency on the Monash Freeway.

§  $356 million to complete the upgrade of the M80 Ringroad.

Labor’s Victorian Regional Transport Package includes $220 million for the Murray Basin Rail project to meet increasing demand for rail freight services as well as a $350 million regional roads package.

Labor’s candidate for the marginal federal seat of Corangamite, Libby Coker, said the ALP were on the right road in regards to the funding.

“Our Great Ocean Road will see $20 million for upgrades, $120 million to duplicate Barwon Heads Road and funding for the Midland Highway between Geelong and Bannockburn. It will be a safe journey with Labor,” Ms Coker said.

“Many, many people have told me about the potholed road that is the key access road from Barwon Heads and Armstrong Creek to Geelong. We want it fixed.”

In Corangamite, Liberal Sarah Henderson is defending her 3.9 per cent margin from a strong campaign by Ms Coker – a former surf coast councillor and mayor. Corangamite is almost 8,000 sq km and is home to popular surf coast localities, including Torquay and Lorne, as well as the large agricultural district of Colac along the seat’s eastern borders.

The ‘Western District’ in the electorate’s east historically favours the Liberal vote where the conservative rural voice is strongest – which is even more reason for Labor voters to have their say on 2 July.

Coker said her priorities for the region were simple.

“I’m running to deliver jobs for our community and to make sure nobody misses out on medical tests they need. And I’m running to ensure every child gets the education they deserve,” she said.

Shadow Transport Minister Anthony Albanese said Melbourne’s population was predicted to grow by 1,700 people a week between 2011 and 2031.

“The state’s freight carrying task is expected to nearly double in the same period. We must invest now to provide the infrastructure to meet this projected growth or risk traffic congestion damaging the economy and reducing our capacity to create jobs,” he said.

The Abbott-Turnbull Government has courted conflict with Victoria, particularly over the scrapped East-West Link, which would have provided a paltry 45 cents in economic benefit for every dollar invested.

Its failure to deliver major projects is reflected in Australian Bureau of Statistics figures showing that public sector infrastructure investment fell by 20 per cent between the September quarter of 2013 and the September quarter of 2015.

For full details of the Melbourne Roads Package and the Victorian Regional Transport Package, please

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