With the Federal election out of the way I thought it was a good to to update everyone on where we stand with Oaklands Crossing.
As I'm sure many of you are aware the Turnbull Liberal Government committed $40 million of funding to go toward fixing this long running problem in our community. The new member for Boothby, Nicolle Flint, was a strong advocate for this funding and this is the first time any money has ever been put on the table to deliver a solution.
If you have been following my www.fixoaklandscrossing.com.au campaign you will also be aware that for the past 18 months I have been calling on the State Government to release costings and plans for all solutions for the intersection and surrounds that they have been working on with the Department of Planning Transport and Infrastructure.
Unfortunately those requests have been stalled by the Government and I have been denied access to any documents. I have taken the matter to the Ombudsman and at the time of typing I am still waiting for the results of the application. The stalling by the Government is incredibly frustrating and it keeps us all in the dark.
I have also invited Transport Minister Stephen Mullighan to the crossing to see the problem first hand and to hear from the community about how it impacts them. He has failed to accept the invitation.
In 2012 the cost of an overpass solution was between $100-110 million. Unfortunately the council no longer has these plans and as I suggested before, the Government has so far refused to share them with us so we have no official costing model.
Just before the Federal Election Minister Mullighan indicated on radio that the cost for grade separation today was now anywhere between $150 - $200 million. This was an interesting revelation for two reasons.
- It indicates Minister Mullighan has done some work on this project and he has a few different plans scaling up from $150 to $200. These are the various options he is hiding but we would like to see them so we can compare and evaluate.
- It indicates that since 2012 the overpass has increased in cost by between $50 and $90 million. This is a major blow out in 4 years and the Minister must explain how this has been allowed to happen.
I am continuing to fight for this project on behalf of our entire community. I want the State Government to let us know know what different plans there are and how much they cost. We need them sooner rather than later so we can discuss the solution with all stakeholders. These details will allow us to come up with a funding model that will enable this project to be delivered.
We must keep fighting to www.fixoaklandscrossing.com.au