TSRC on the move as Warrego Interchange works begin

Media Release

DC189/2017

27 June 2017

Joint release with:

Mark Bailey

Queensland Minister for Main Roads, Road Safety and Ports

Scott Buchholz

Federal Member for Wright

The Toowoomba Second Range Crossing (TSRC) project has hit another milestone with works starting on the Lockyer Valley connection with the Warrego Highway at Helidon Spa.

Federal Minister for Infrastructure and Transport Darren Chester said the Warrego Highway eastern interchange would give motorists direct access to the TSRC when it opened in late 2018.

“The TSRC project is part of the Coalition's record $75 billion infrastructure investment programme and highlights our commitment to delivering the necessary infrastructure to support a growing nation. This interchange—and the broader TSRC—will help move freight more efficiently from suppliers to markets, ensuring local producers are well-catered for in a competitive global environment,” Mr Chester said.

Queensland Minister for Main Roads, Road Safety and Ports Mark Bailey said both motorists and pedestrians would be safer, with the road diverting up to 80 per cent of heavy vehicle traffic away from Withcott in the Lockyer Valley and Toowoomba areas.

“Motorists who travel along this section of the Warrego Highway, Postmans Ridge Road and Murphys Creek Road, and the whole area of the Upper Lockyer, will be safer because there will be no overflow of traffic from the existing range crossing,” Mr Bailey said.

“This is currently a major challenge for locals, with the existing crossing needing to close down because of a breakdown or an accident. This upgrade will improve reliability, access, and safety on this section of road, which will ultimately benefit the entire state.”

Federal Member for Wright Scott Buchholz said the interchange would save time for commercial vehicle operators, directly supporting businesses in the Lockyer Valley.

“Whether they are serving customers locally, interstate or overseas, freight operators need a strong transport network to meet the needs of customers. The interchange will reduce travel times, ease congestion and, more importantly, improve safety by giving our road freight industry an alternative route to the Toowoomba City centre as they cross the range,” Mr Buchholz said.

The TSRC project is expected to reach completion at the end of 2018. The 41 kilometre long route will run from the Warrego Highway at Helidon Spa in the east to the Gore Highway at Athol in the west, via Charlton. It is supporting up to 1,800 direct and indirect jobs during design and construction, with many of the jobs going to the local community.

The Australian Government has committed up to $1.137 billion, representing 80 per cent of the capital cost, to the project, with the Queensland Government contributing the equivalent of 20 per cent through a Public Private Partnership with the Nexus consortium.