SEQ Mayors have today welcomed the announcement by the Federal and State Governments that they will commit a combined $1.7 billion to the completion of the Toowoomba Second Range Crossing.
Council of Mayors (SEQ) Chairman Cr Graham Quirk said SEQ Mayors have been pushing long and hard to achieve this level of financial commitment to the project. The Federal Government will contribute $1.3 billion.
“This announcement shows us that the Federal Government has listened to the people of South East Queensland and understands the importance of this project in improving safety and productivity across the region,” Cr Quirk said.
“The Second Range Crossing was one of the five key infrastructure projects advocated by the Council of Mayors (SEQ) in our pre-election policy last year.
“This is one of the most critical nation-building projects and it has to be done now so this announcement could not have come at a better time.
“The Second Range Crossing is important to both maintain and grow employment opportunities in Toowoomba, the Lockyer Valley, Darling Downs and across the South East but its benefits will be felt across the country.
“This project will improve travel time and reduce crashes and associated costs by providing a safer and less congested route.
“The Toowoomba Second Range Crossing has been on political agendas for decades and it is wonderful to see that it is finally going to become a reality.”
Cr Quirk also thanked the Queensland Government for its tireless efforts in working with the Federal Government in reaching a funding solution.
A public-private business model has been scrapped with the Federal Government committing an 80 per cent stake in the project and the Newman Government providing the additional 20 per cent.
“The Council of Mayors (SEQ) through its advocacy efforts has pushed the Federal Government to address the infrastructure backlog in SEQ and invest in the future productivity of the region,” Cr Quirk said.
“We are pleased this critical piece of infrastructure is finally being delivered.”
Work is due to commence in early 2015.