Building bridges over Oxley Creek floodplain

JOINT STATEMENT

Close to 200 new girders have been lifted into place over Oxley Creek, continuing momentum on the $400 million Ipswich Motorway upgrade.

The girders – weighing up to 22 tonnes each and measuring 25m in length – will form two higher and wider bridges over the floodplain.

The upgrade will mean boosted capacity and safer connectivity for the motorway’s 85,000 daily drivers.

The upgrade between Rocklea and Darra has created 470 jobs and is jointly-funded by the Australian and Queensland Governments on a 50:50 basis.

Premier and Member for Inala Annastacia Palaszczuk said the global pandemic had impacted economies around the world, but because Queensland was continuing to manage the health response, we were able to focus on delivering Queensland’s economic recovery plan, which includes a $50 billion infrastructure guarantee.

“For roads and transport that means getting on with projects like the Ipswich Motorway upgrade and a record $23 billion roads and transport program, which will create 21,500 jobs,” Ms Palaszczuk said.

Federal Minister for Population, Cities and Urban Infrastructure Alan Tudge said despite COVID, work on the upgrade had continued and was on track for completion early next year.

“This is a targeted infrastructure investment to make the trip to work and back home safer for thousands of motorists every day,” Mr Tudge said.

“At the same time we’re injecting much needed funds into the Queensland economy and creating jobs for hard-working Queenslanders.”

Queensland Transport and Main Roads Minister Mark Bailey said in total close to 4km of girders weighing more than 3800 tonnes had been installed to make way for the bridges, with the feat sparking jobs for a team of highly-trained crane operators and riggers.

“There’s a long road ahead when it comes to COVID-19, which is why the Palaszczuk Government is focussed on Queensland’s plan for economic recovery – a laser-like focus on infrastructure, jobs, industry and business,” Mr Bailey said.

Senator for Queensland Paul Scarr said the upgrade is set to improve flood resilience, reduce travel times and increase reliability for the transportation of vital goods and services.

“The project will support over 470 jobs at a time when creating and maintaining jobs has never been more critical,” Senator Scarr said.

“Works will be delivered by Bielby Hull Albem Joint Venture – a Queensland-owned consortium.”

Member for Algester Leeanne Enoch said with almost half a billion dollars being invested the project would boost local jobs and provide safer, more efficient roads.

“Many members of the community rely on the motorway each day, and projects like this mean they can get home sooner and spend more time with their families,” Ms Enoch said.

“It will also energise our local economy, boosting jobs for local businesses, which is so important right now.”

Member for Mt Ommaney Jess Pugh said the 2011 floods saw the old bridges submerged and major closures along the motorway.

“This milestone is another huge win for our community. I’ve seen how devastating floods can be for our community, and the impacts on the Ipswich Motorway,” Ms Pugh said.

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