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Coomera Connector project barges ahead

July 30th, 2023Coomera Connector project barges ahead

Queensland's Coomera Connector project is full steam ahead with the arrival of a unique piece of construction equipment onsite on the Coomera River – a 48-metre-long piling barge named the Maeve Anne - the Federal Transport Minister and Member for Ballarat says.

Queensland’s Coomera Connector project is full steam ahead with the arrival of a unique piece of construction equipment onsite on the Coomera River – a 48-metre-long piling barge named the Maeve Anne – the Federal Transport Minister and Member for Ballarat says.

Catherine King MP last week issued a media statement recording that: “The Maeve Anne has made the journey from the docks at Murarrie in Brisbane to her new home on the Coomera River, where she will assist with building the nearly one-kilometre-long Coomera River bridge as part of Stage 1 North”.

Ms King’s statement issued last Monday continued:

“The Maeve Anne will be used to build a temporary jetty on the northern banks of the Coomera River, which will be used to store material and equipment, and to move supplies and people out onto the river.

“Once the jetty is installed, works will start on building 20 bridge marine piles, which will take about six months to complete. 

“The Maeve Anne will later be joined by her sister barge, the Suzanne, which will be used in the construction of the Coomera River bridge substructure, and to install bridge girders.

“The Maeve Anne is equipped with a 250-tonne crane and piling rigs that include vibratory (vibro) hammers and a fly drill and will utilise a crew of around eight specialist marine construction workers on board and the barge.

“The Suzanne will also have its own specialist crew and is equipped with a 500-tonne crawler crane.

“Local mariners will notice some changed conditions on the Coomera River around the marine construction area, including a temporary navigation channel and reduced speed limits.

“The area will be clearly marked with buoys to ensure the safety of the project team and river users.

“The Australian and Queensland governments have committed $2.16 billion to plan and build Coomera Connector Stage 1 between Coomera and Nerang, with each investing $1.07 billion.

Major construction on the Coomera Connector started in March.

“The new motorway is expected to open progressively to traffic from late 2025, with planning continuing for future stages.”

QLD Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk: “Every milestone in the Coomera Connector’s construction puts us a step forward in getting tourists and Gold Coast locals home sooner and safer.

“The Coomera Connector ties in with the M1, the new Hope Island train station and the broader active transport network – catering for the rapid growth this region is seeing.

“Queensland’s Big Transport Build is underpinned by transformational infrastructure like the Coomera Connector, which will change the way people travel to and from the Gold Coast.”   

Federal Minister for Infrastructure, Transport, Regional Development and Local Government Catherine King: “The Coomera Connector is a game-changer for South-East Queenslanders – it means less time stuck in traffic and more time spent with loved ones enjoying Queensland’s great lifestyle.  

“We know congestion is a significant issue for the region and frustrating for motorists, which is why we’re getting on with delivering this critical piece of infrastructure.

“Works have ramped up over the past couple of months since construction started and it is wonderful to see the new motorway construction well underway.

“The delivery of this vital piece of infrastructure is estimated to support an average of 1,000 direct jobs over the life of the project.”

Feds ‘getting on’ with inland rail plan: King

July 16th, 2023Feds ‘getting on’ with inland rail plan: King

The federal government is "getting on" with implementing its response to the recommendations in Dr Kerry Schott AO’s report, The Delivery of Inland Rail: An Independent Review the federal transport minister Catherine King MP says.

The federal government is “getting on” with implementing its response to the recommendations in Dr Kerry Schott AO’s report, The Delivery of Inland Rail: An Independent Review the federal transport minister Catherine King MP says.

In a recent media release the Member for Ballarat, whose full portfolio is Federal Minister for Infrastructure, Transport, Regional Development and Local Government, said: “We are delivering on our commitment to set Inland Rail up for success by separating its governance and delivery arrangements from the Australian Rail Track Corporation’s (ARTC’s) day to day operations”.

Ms King’s statement issued this month also states: On 23 June 2023, the Government issued a new interim Statement of Expectations (SoE -attached) to ARTC. In it, the Government has reaffirmed its objectives and expectations for ARTC and the future delivery of Inland Rail.

In line with the Government’s response to Dr Schott’s review, ARTC is establishing a new subsidiary – Inland Rail Pty Ltd, which will govern the delivery of the Inland Rail.

The Australian Government is committed to ensuring Inland Rail Pty Ltd has the necessary expertise and independent oversight required to deliver on the Government’s objectives for Inland Rail.

Inland Rail Pty Ltd will have its own dedicated board of directors appointed by the ARTC. The six-member board, includes the Chair of ARTC as a non-executive director. The members of the new board have been chosen for their skills, qualifications, knowledge and experience, including in the delivery of nationally significant freight infrastructure projects. 

The board of Inland Rail Pty Ltd will be chaired by Mr Robert Rust, with Ms Louise Thurgood as the Deputy Chair

The three other board members are

  • Ms Erin Flaherty
  • Mr James Cain
  • Ms Vivienne King

Inland Rail is an important project to meet Australia’s growing freight requirements and will improve road safety and help to decarbonise the economy.

The Government is delivering on its commitment to get on with building Inland Rail, with a focus on completing the sections between Beveridge in Victoria and Parkes in NSW by 2027. When complete, the southern section of Inland Rail will increase resilience and improve supply chain productivity between Melbourne, Perth, Sydney, Newcastle, the Illawarra and Adelaide.

The Australian Government also wishes to thank Mr Mark Campbell for his leadership of ARTC over the last 3 years, following the announcement that he will be stepping down from his roles as Managing Director and CEO of ARTC at the end of July. Dr Kerry Schott AO, as Acting Chair of ARTC, has thanked Mr Campbell for his contribution to the company through a number of difficult years. We wish him well with his future endeavours.

Federal Minister for Infrastructure, Transport, Regional Development and Local Government, Catherine King: “We are making good on our commitment to act on the recommendations of the Independent Review of Inland Rail.

“The establishment of Inland Rail Pty Ltd and the updated Statement of Expectations, are examples of this Government getting on with the job to refresh the approach to delivering Inland Rail ensure it is adequately funded and resourced.

“I am confident in the direction provided by the Statement of Expectations and in the chosen Inland Rail Pty Ltd board members, who will bring valuable industry insights and expertise to ensure the Albanese Government delivers on its commitments to Inland Rail.”  

Federal Finance Minister Katy Gallagher: “The Government has established a dedicated subsidiary company with an experienced and skilled board of directors to ensure Inland Rail is appropriately managed.

The Government’s updated Statement of Expectations brings ARTC and Inland Rail in line with highest standards of governance, transparency and accountability for corporate and government-owned entities”.     

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