Treasurer and Deputy Premier Jackie Trad, Minister for Main Roads and Transport Mark Bailey and Ipswich West MP Jim Madden at a recent Warrego Hwy funding announcement.
Treasurer and Deputy Premier Jackie Trad, Minister for Main Roads and Transport Mark Bailey and Ipswich West MP Jim Madden at a recent Warrego Hwy funding announcement. Contributed

End may be in sight for Mount Crosby Rd interchange stoush

THE Deputy Prime Minister has acknowledged the sorry state of the Mount Crosby interchange and called it a "priority" for the area.

However there has still been no confirmation the upgrades will happen with eighty per cent funding from the Federal Government, according to Ipswich West MP, Jim Madden.

Mr Madden said he asked the Deputy Prime Minister and federal Minister for Infrastructure, Transport and Regional Development, Michael McCormack to confirm the funding in October and is yet to receive a response.

"I asked him, could he confirm that the funding for this project from the federal government would be on a 80:20 basis," Mr Madden said.

"The second thing I asked him was to bring forward the funding from the federal government, given that the state government has committed their 20 per cent, bring forward the 80 per cent funding from the federal government so that work can commence as soon as possible.

"I want to be positive about this. I think the federal government made it clear that they want to bring forward projects that are ready to proceed and this is ready to proceed in my electorate.

"This is going to add to jobs in the area, it's going to be money spent in the area, it's good for the economy. The Prime Minister has said a number of times that he wants to bring forward projects that are ready to proceed for the economy and this is an ideal opportunity for them to do so."

An earlier letter from Mr McCormack's office highlighted the area as a priority, it steered clear of commitments and only mentioned cash for the projects.

"The Australian Government is aware upgrades to the Mount Crosby Interchange are a priority. In the 2019-20 Budget, the Australian Government committed $320 million of extra funding towards future projects along the Warrego Hwy," the letter read.

"This is in addition to the $508 million currently committed between Toowoomba and Roma, and $60 million committed under the Roads of Strategic Importance initiative between Toowoomba and Ipswich.

"The Australian Government stands ready to consider proposals from the Queensland Government to allocate $320 million to specific projects,including the Mount Crosby Interchange."

But Mr Madden said the state government is ready to move on the upgrades and the cash needs to be brought forward to get the upgrades off the ground.

"The state government is ready to go now. There's no time period on that. The $320 million that's been allocated by the federal government is over a three or four year period and it's back ended and we're basically asking them to bring that forward," he said.

"We're not talking about a huge amount of money here. We're only talking about 80 per cent of $22 million. This is a $320 million bucket of money, we're asking them to bring forward their $18 million on the project.

"I'm hopeful with the support of my federal members, the premier and the minister for main roads Mark Bailey, and the Deputy Prime Minister Michael McCormack that we'll get this project started as soon as possible."



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