The South Australian Government is calling for tenders to develop strategic planning studies and business cases for several major transport corridors across the state, to improve safety and remove more freight off the South East Freeway and Cross Road.

Tenders have been called to develop strategic planning studies and business cases for the Greater Adelaide Freight Bypass, Murray Bridge to South East Links, Eyre Peninsula and Far North Area plans, and Eyre Highway upgrades from Port Augusta to the Western Australia border.

Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Infrastructure, Transport and Regional Development, Barnaby Joyce, said the Greater Adelaide Freight Bypass will transform the Mount Barker region by decongesting the freeway, and allowing easier and faster travel for residents and visitors.

“This project is 50:50 funded by the Australian and South Australian governments, with $17 million allocated to the planning work that will be used to inform priorities and investments needed on freight networks to support economic growth and the needs of regional areas,” Mr Joyce said. 

South Australian Minister for Infrastructure and Transport, Corey Wingard, said the studies were necessary to meet the freight needs associated with a growing population and expanding regional centres.

“The South Australian and Australian governments are working together to build what matters to South Australians and provide critical freight infrastructure that can improve productivity and reduce freight costs,” Mr Wingard said.

“Planning studies are crucial to our understanding of how the road corridors are used and to identify any current problems and issues, or opportunities for future investment.

“The Greater Adelaide Freight Bypass will enable some trucks to be diverted from the South Eastern Freeway onto the regional north-south freight route and the Sturt Highway.

“The Murray Bridge to South East Links includes key planning into the costs and benefits for the duplication of the Princes Highway and Swanport Bridge between Murray Bridge and the Mallee Highway.

“The Eyre Highway upgrade planning study will be used to develop a business case into the costs and benefits of providing access for triple road trains from the Western Australia border through to Port Augusta.

“This, plus duplication of the Joy Baluch bridge, widening of intersections in Ceduna and Thevenard and widening and realignment of the intersection of the Eyre and Lincoln Highways will form part of a connected high productivity heavy freight network and provide priority for vehicles travelling on the Eyre Highway.

“The Eyre Peninsula and Far North Area plans will provide recommendations to support economic growth, the needs of regional communities and freight productivity with investments in road networks and regional remote aviation access.”

Federal Member for Grey, Rowan Ramsey, said the studies are about ensuring key freight roads more efficiently connect agricultural and mining regions to ports, airports and other transport hubs, supporting regional jobs and industries.

“Any freight by-pass of Adelaide will necessarily come through the Grey electorate and will allow for economic expansion along the corridor,” Mr Ramsey said.

“The freight task to and from the regions to the north and west of Adelaide are increasing and will continue to do so. The more efficient movement of all those products will benefit all South Australians.”

Federal Member for Barker, Tony Pasin, said an enhanced freight network would boost the local, state and national economy.

“Keeping freight running smoothly and efficiently is vital to keeping our economy strong, supporting jobs and servicing regional areas and providing well maintained and connected road networks is a fundamental part of this,” Mr Pasin said.

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