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The 2018-19 Budget shows Federal Government’s commitment to invest more than $75 billion in transport infrastructure projects over the next 10 years to improve quality of life, nationwide.

The focus aim of the 2018-19 Budget – infrastructure is to reduce congestion in our cities to get commuters home sooner and safer, improve freight efficiency to our ports and markets and the connect between states and regions of Australia. Ultimately, increase economic growth and create new employment opportunities in Australia.

Read on to find out which infrastructure projects that made the Priority List.

What is the Infrastructure Priority List (IPL)?

The Infrastructure Priority List (IPL) is a prioritised list of infrastructure projects and initiatives developed by Infrastructure Australia.

The purpose of it is to help establish a long-term plan of our national infrastructure needs and how the government can best maximise the best deliver world-class infrastructure with limited infrastructure funding.

The infrastructure projects are prioritised based on timescales of:

Near (0-5 years)
Medium (5-10 years)
Long Term (10-15 years)

To see all the projects, download the full Priority List PDF here.

eiengineering Infrastructure Australia
Source: Infrastructure Australia

According to Infrastructure Australia, Australia’s population growth rate is one of the highest in the OECD and can easily exceed the UK, Canada and the USA. It is vital to ensure that our government leaders prioritise their infrastructure spending based on its ability to solve the 6 challenges of the future: Population Growth, Assessment Process, Cities & Public Transport, Connectivity between Cities, Regional Hubs, Assessment Framework.

Here are some major infrastructure projects you should know. Click to see the project highlights:

  1. Hobart Science and Technology Precinct (TAS)
  2. M80 Ring Road upgrade (VIC)
  3. North-East link motorway in Melbourne (VIC)
  4. North/South Corridor in Adelaide (SA)
  5. Tarcoola Rail Upgrade Acceleration (SA)

1. Hobart Science and Technology Precinct (TAS)

The University of Tasmania has plans to build a new Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) facility, TasSTEM for tertiary education, research and training in Hobart’s CBD, Inveresk, Launceston, and Burnie. This $400 million facility is expected to be completed by 2021.

By putting science at the forefront of Tasmania’s economic growth goals, TasSTEM aims to attract more students to study at the university, new businesses and generate employment opportunities.

2. M80 Ring Road upgrade (VIC)

The M80 Ring Road upgrade will take place from Princes Highway to Greensborough Highway to increase the freeway’s capacity. This will mean better traffic flow, more reliable travel times and improved safety. This project is expected to complete by 2021. Find more about the upgrade project.

According to VicRoads, the upgrade includes a new freeway management system to better manage the roads through:

  • overhead speed limit and lane use signs
  • traffic signals on ramps to control the flow of traffic onto the freeway
  • variable message signs to let you know what’s happening on the road ahead
  • CCTV cameras to enable us to track traffic and incidents
eiengineering vic roads road upgrade ring road
Source: VicRoads

3. North-East link motorway in Melbourne (VIC)

This is the single biggest transport infrastructure investment in Victoria’s history!

This will increase the capacity of the Eastern Freeway – it will reduce travel times, reduce congestion as at least 15,000 trucks will be off local roads per day, create new walking and cycling paths, and help grow areas in the north and south-east.

North-East Link Motorway includes:

  • Three-lane twin tunnels that spans for 5 kms beneath Bulleen Road, residential and environmental areas
  • Interchanges at Bulleen Road, Manningham Road, Lower Plenty Road, Grimshaw Street and the M80 Ring Road
  • Up to 30-minute faster trips between Melbourne’s north and south-east, with toll-free connections
eiengineering north east link melbourne
Source: The Age

4. North/South Corridor in Adelaide (SA)

Adelaide is a key location for freight to access industrial areas, the airport and ports. It’s the middle point for people to and from Victoria and south-east South Australia. One of Adelaide’s most important transport corridors is the North-South Corridor as it is the major route for north and south-bound traffic.

Currently, the traffic congestion along South Road has increased travel time delays significantly and reduced reliability for road users. Especially with limitations in the rail network, South Road plays a vital role in the north-south freight task.

The North-South Corridor project is an upgrade of 3.3km of road Tonsley Boulevard and the Southern Expressway which includes, a non-stop motor way, free-flow interchange and two-lane overpass. This is part of a larger upgrade of the 78km between Gawler and Noarlunga which has been featured in Adelaide’s plans for around 50 years.

The currently funded and incomplete parts are expected to be completed by December 2018.

5. Tarcoola Rail Upgrade Acceleration (SA)

Currently, approximately 80% of the land-based freight market serviced by interstate railway network. With the rail freight volume projects aimed to increase by two-thirds by 2030, this project is vital to strengthen the railway tracks, better manage medium-term capacity constraints and be in line with projected growth.

Australian Rail Track Corporation (ARTC) have estimated that the Adelaide-Tarcoola rail line carries 92% of freight between Adelaide and Perth and 90% between Adelaide and Darwin. The Tarcoola rail upgrade is currently listed as a priority initiative in the IPL.

eiengineering Adelaide to Tarcoola Infrastructure Projects
Source: ABC News

By improving the capacity through increasing rail size along the interstate line (from 47 kg per metre to 60kg per metre) and increasing the maximum axle loading (from 23 tonnes to 25 tonnes), this will significantly impact our national productivity. Download this PDF to read more Tarcoola Rail Upgrade Acceleration project.

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