SLOW: The Cunningham Highway is yet to be upgraded, with two levels of government arguing about who should pay what.
SLOW: The Cunningham Highway is yet to be upgraded, with two levels of government arguing about who should pay what. David Nielsen

High-priority project plans missing for Ipswich drivers

NO MAJOR projects in Ipswich have been classed as a high priority on Infrastructure Australia's list, despite the region's high population growth.

The Infrastructure Priority List is a prioritised list of nationally significant investments.

Projects on the list provide decision makers with advice and guidance on specific infrastructure investments that will underpin continued prosperity.

With our region expected to house 553,000 people by 2030, transport and road infrastructure must be built to keep pace with growth.

Despite this, no project in Ipswich has made it to the high-priority section of Infrastructure Australia.

An upgrade of the Ipswich Motorway is the closest project considered a priority initiative.

According to the infrastructure entity, the Ipswich Motorway corridor experiences congestion and extensive delays.

It is estimated the delays cost up to $40 million each year, resulting in inefficient freight movement.

According to Infrastructure Australia the high-priority initiative includes a suite of road upgrades along 7km of the Ipswich Motorway between Rocklea and Darra.

future ipswich logo
future ipswich logo

In Ipswich, work on the Centenary Motorway corridor has been classed as a priority.

Connecting Ipswich, Springfield and the Ripley Valley to Brisbane's inner north and the CBD, congestion on the Centenary Highway will become a problem within five years.

"Projected population growth in the Western Corridor, combined with a growing number of people commuting from these areas to Brisbane's CBD for work, will exacerbate the problem in the future," Infrastructure Australia notes.

Average weekday traffic on the Centenary Bridge was about 100,000 vehicles per day in 2016 and is estimated to rise to more than 150,000 vehicles per day in 2036.

The Cunningham Highway remains on Infrastructure Australia's priority list despite the Federal Government committing $170 million, half the total cost, to fix the intersection.

The State Government is yet to commit its share.