Standing Up For Civil Contractors

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23 Sep 2020 2:00 PM | Anonymous

One of South Australia’s most influential industry lobbies has taken the unprecedented step of going direct to a Federal funding authority to get proposed major state construction projects prioritised and much higher up the funding ladder.

The move may prove crucial to how quickly SA can reboot its COVID-starved economy and protect and create new jobs.

The Civil Contractors Federation (South Australia) (CCF (SA)) announced today it had decided to approach the key Infrastructure Australia (IA) body after a decade of failures by local bureaucrats to get even one SA project on the IA’s “highest priority” annual funding lists.

Infrastructure Australia is the nation’s independent infrastructure advisor that recommends funding requirements to the Federal Government for transport and other infrastructure projects around the nation.

Among the key drivers of the CCF (SA)’s project list are some of SA’s most heavily trafficked but dangerous roads and highways – one of which saw yet another fatal accident within the past week.

“We have been advised that Infrastructure South Australia is working on a submission, but from the Federation’s point of view, we just can’t take any more chances and yet again see South Australian projects not make any of Infrastructure Australia's lists,” Mr Sutherland said.

"While we will be thrilled to see the State Government make a submission to Infrastructure Australia, the failure to do so in the past has resulted in South Australia missing out on billions of dollars of Federal funding for much needed transport infrastructure," he said.

“To ensure South Australian projects are well and truly on the radar of Infrastructure Australia, the Federation in our submission has identified 10 projects, an extensive program of State-wide road maintenance and a supplementary list of worthy projects,” Mr Sutherland said.

"Identifying projects for funding isn't difficult. The State's road network is 50 years out of date and in in many places in poor condition. Nearly every road in the State has a hole or crack in it.

"South Australia was established in 1836 and we still don't have a decent, modern, safe, uncongested motorway across our capital city, Adelaide.

"SA’s major strategic regional freight corridors are two lane roads in less than optimal condition when these routes should have been duplicated years ago into a minimum four lanes.

"Given the proven job creating power and economic stimulus possible from public and private investment in transport and other infrastructure, it is now well recognised that infrastructure investment will be critical to Australia and SA’s post-COVID economic recovery.

"Credible sources say that the current pipeline of projects is insufficient. Reserve Bank of Australia Governor, Mr Philip Lowe, has implored the States to commit an additional $40 billion to infrastructure over the next two years, effectively doubling their existing spending.

"The CCF (SA) has been calling on the Federal and State Government to invest in transport and other infrastructure, and importantly, to accelerate this spending.

"Our recommendation to Infrastructure Australia is for the Federal Government to allocate sufficient money in concert with the SA Government to bring as many infrastructure projects as possible to fruition, sooner than later.”

The Federation undertook its own research on proposed priority projects and believes the following are long overdue. If funded and brought to construction, they would not only greatly assist in the economic recovery, Mr Sutherland says, but also give SA the infrastructure it requires to set the State up for the future. The top proposals are:

  • o   Strzelecki Track Upgrade
  • o   Augusta Highway Duplication
  • o   Dukes Highway Duplication
  • o   Swanport Bridge Duplication
  • o   Sturt Highway Duplication / Truro Bypass
  • o   Princess Highway Upgrade
  • o   Adelaide Stormwater Upgrade
  • o   SE Drainage Scheme Upgrade
  • o   Aldinga rail extension
  • o   South Australian 'Road Keeper' (Road Maintenance) Network
  • o   Supplementary Projects

Standing Up For Civil Contractors

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