Page 3615 - Week 11 - Tuesday, 22 November 2022
MR STEEL: I thank for Mr Pettersson for his question and for his interest in road and transport infrastructure, particularly on the north side, in his electorate of Yerrabi.
Opposition members interjecting—
MADAM SPEAKER: Members!
MR STEEL: We know that roads play a critical role in the movement of cyclists, pedestrians, public transport, freight and commuters. I can report that construction is well underway on the upgrade of Gundaroo Drive between Ginninderra Drive and the Barton Highway. The upgrade is delivering a duplicated dual carriageway, 6.4 kilometres of cycle lanes, new and upgraded shared paths, two new signalised intersections, new and upgraded bus stops and wider, safer pedestrian underpasses. This translates to safer and faster commutes for travellers between Belconnen and Gungahlin, which are only going to grow over time.
Work is also progressing on the Monaro Highway upgrades in Canberra’s south. Safety upgrades to the rural section have been completed between Williamsdale Road and Royalla Drive. The early works have commenced on the construction of the new flyover interchange at Lanyon Drive in Hume. Design is underway for upgraded access between Hume and the Monaro Highway and a new flyover interchange at Isabella Drive, providing safer and more efficient travel for commuters and freight from the south.
MR PETTERSSON: Minister, why is it important to duplicate roads like these?
MR STEEL: I thank the member for his question. He would know well that Canberra’s population is growing rapidly—the highest rate of growth in the country, based on the census. It is critical that our transport infrastructure and our roads are keeping pace with Canberra’s higher than expected population growth. We want to make sure that our city remains one of the most liveable places in the world by continuing to invest in that infrastructure.
Upgraded and duplicated roads do improve safety for all road users, particularly for vulnerable road users such as cyclists and pedestrians, and particularly when we put in that additional infrastructure for them as well. When we upgrade roads, we do take the opportunity to improve active travel infrastructure, constructing new shared paths, protected intersections, and adding new intersections with control for pedestrians, which did not exist before. That ensures that road upgrades benefit not just drivers but also cyclists, pedestrians, and even electric scooter users, too, now in Gungahlin.
Roads are also critical for the fast and efficient movement of freight, particularly along our strategic corridors, such as the Monaro Highway. This is crucial for our growing city. It is the gateway to the south-eastern New South Wales region. The ACT government will continue to invest in road infrastructure, active travel infrastructure and public transport to ensure that Canberrans can move around our city easily, efficiently and, importantly, safely.
DR PATERSON: Minister, what progress is being made on duplicating Athllon Drive, in Canberra’s south?