The Queensland government has announced it will undertake a multi-million-dollar investigation into a road tunnel for Brisbane’s north.
The announcement, the day before the Queensland budget is due to be handed down, details that $35 million will be spent on a “detailed investment proposal towards building a congestion-busting road tunnel between Kedron and Carseldine”.
The proposal will be led by a new entity, North Brisbane Infrastructure, which will be established through the Queensland Investment Corporation.
North Brisbane Infrastructure will undertake detailed transport modelling, technical assessments and financial analysis as part of this process.
The analysis will also consider the interaction of the proposed tunnel with public and active transport needs and opportunities along the corridor.
Potential benefits to be examined as part of detailed investment proposal include shorter commuter times; better connections with the Bruce Highway to and from the Sunshine Coast; better connections to the west of the city through Legacy Way and south through the Clem7 to the M1; and improving amenity and liveability for locals by removing through traffic from Gympie Road.
“Given the significance of the project, any tunnel will need to be tolled, and this will be considered as part of the detailed investment proposal,” the government said.
“Community consultation to allow residents, businesses and other key stakeholders to have their say will be undertaken later this year.”
Treasurer Cameron Dick said the tunnel was a “new solution proposed for a long-established challenge—easing congestion through Brisbane’s north”.
He said the QIC, which has nearly $30 billion in infrastructure assets under management, “has the expertise to give us the clearest answer in the shortest time to decide whether a Gympie Road toll tunnel stacks up”.
“Forecast population growth on the Sunshine Coast and in the Moreton Bay region will increase traffic into Brisbane, so now is the right time to do this work.
“Based on Brisbane’s most recent road tunnel projects, from this point the tunnel could potentially be built within about eight years if it stacks up.”
Brisbane Lord Mayor Adrian Schrinner welcomed the news while bemoaning on social media that “it’s frustrating this will be the subject of yet another study (we completed one last year), it’s a big step in the right direction for residents”.
“Now that the state government has finally admitted tunnels are a better option, they must rule out bulldozing bushland and permanently preserve the North West Transport Corridor as an environmentally sensitive green corridor.”
Transport and main roads minister Mark Bailey said the investment proposal would also consider active transport, which we know is an important option for the future.
Article source: Queensland Property Investor
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