The Australian Government has committed a further AUD$183 million towards a four-lane bypass of Tiaro on the Bruce Highway in Queensland, bringing the total budget for the project to $268.8 million.
Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Infrastructure, Transport and Regional Development, Michael McCormack, said the Federal Government’s new commitment would support the increasing capacity of current and future traffic demands.
“The proposed bypass will remove a large portion of heavy vehicles from the Tiaro township, improving safety and liveability for residents whilst future-proofing the highway for the years ahead,” Mr McCormack said.
“Field investigations have been underway within the bypass corridor study area since March 2020, helping identify the best alignment for this new highway.
“We are continuing to invest in critical projects such as this under our record $110 billion infrastructure investment pipeline, which is a key pillar of Australia’s world-leading economic recovery.”
Federal Member for Wide Bay and Deputy Speaker of the House of Representatives, Llew O’Brien, said the Federal Government’s funding commitment for a four-lane bypass was a major win for road safety, a significant economic boost for the Fraser Coast, and a victory for common sense.
“The bypass will dramatically improve road safety with a four-lane divided road that will prevent head on collisions. It will give traffic space to move around in the event of a breakdown, and improve flood immunity to keep traffic moving when the Mary River floods,” Mr O’Brien said.
“Industry and manufacturing rely on a safe and efficient transport network and a four lane Tiaro bypass will increase the carrying capacity of this section that will create new jobs and opportunities in Tiaro and Maryborough to grow the Fraser Coast economy.
“The bypass will also improve Tiaro’s amenity by removing trucks from the town that just pass through, increasing safety and liveability in the community.”
Mr O’Brien said he believes the Tiaro bypass is the next logical step to extend the four lanes from Curra to Maryborough, especially as it runs through a greenfield corridor.
“Thousands of people have shown their support calling for a safer four-lane bypass and I am pleased the Federal Government has listened to them and committed our share of the funding for this vital project.
“Anyone who doesn’t support the four lane Tiaro bypass isn’t putting Maryborough and the region’s road users first.
“This has been a hard-fought campaign and I give credit to Denis Chapman for championing two petitions, to the Fraser Coast Council and Member for Gympie Tony Perrett for taking their concerns to the State Government, and to every community member who signed their name or shared their views on this important project.
“We now have Federal funding locked in from the Coalition Government for this project and I look forward to the State Government bringing forward plans for the four-lane bypass as soon as possible to make this vital project a reality.”
The project’s Business Case is expected to be completed by late 2021, which will inform the delivery schedule.
Image source: ABC Wide Bay