Katherine plans for future freight

Media Release

WT109/2015

20 April 2015

Joint release with:

Willem Westra van Holthe

NT Deputy Chief Minister

Aurecon Australasia Pty Ltd has been selected as the preferred consultant to conduct a planning study for the future alternative freight route around the Katherine town centre.

Acting Prime Minister and Minister for Infrastructure and Regional Development Warren Truss said the appointment continues the Australian Government's commitment to improve the road network in the Northern Territory.

“In years to come the Northern Territory expects to experience strong growth in mining, agriculture and live cattle exports, with the Stuart Highway forming a key link between these industries and the global market,” Mr Truss said.

“This growth will see an increased number of heavy vehicles travelling through the centre of Katherine, affecting local traffic and pedestrians.

“With the Australian Government's plan to develop northern Australia, this study will ensure both freight operators and regional centres are well-serviced by the highway, while also reducing the impact of freight traffic on local residents.”

Northern Territory Deputy Chief Minister Willem Westra van Holthe said the planning study will bring long-term benefits to Katherine residents.

“With the increased use by heavy vehicles, there will be growing concerns for road safety, in particular the safety of the children, other pedestrians and local traffic,” Mr Westra van Holthe said.

“This planning study will look at long term options to improve community safety and liveability by redirecting heavy vehicles around the Katherine town centre.

“The study will also investigate measures to improve transport capacity to meet future growth needs of the town, including a second crossing of the Katherine River.”

The Australian Government is fully funding the study as part of a broader $6.29 million project, including intersection upgrades and widening works on Bicentennial Road, which are early works to support a future heavy vehicle route around Katherine town centre.

Results of the study are expected to be delivered by the end of 2015.