Highway in tatters so Madden wants action
THE Brisbane Valley Highway south of Toogoolawah is in a state of disrepair and Labor candidate for Ipswich West Jim Madden is calling for something to be done.
Mr Madden said that if he was elected the new member he would "always make sure the Brisbane Valley Highway is properly maintained".
Mr Madden said that in its latest budget the Newman Government failed to fund much-needed repairs to two popular sections of the highway south of Toogoolawah.
He said the stretches were deemed so unsafe that the speed limit has been reduced from 100kmh to 80kmh.
"Neither of the two sections, on the south side of the Geoff Fisher Bridge and at Wanora, is scheduled for resurfacing in 2014-15," he said.
But Ipswich West MP Sean Choat said that Mr Madden was "behind the eight ball" and that he had already secured funding for the road near Geoff Fisher Bridge.
Mr Madden, also a Somerset councillor, said a motion was passed at the ordinary council meeting of Somerset Regional Council on September 24 that Mayor Graeme Lehmann write to Transport and Main Roads Minister Scott Emerson requesting something be done as a matter of urgency.
"I'm concerned that other sections of this road recently marked 'rough sections' could also face a speed limit reduction to 80kmh instead of being properly fixed," Mr Madden said.
"Once again the Newman Government has left the regional residents of Ipswich West behind when it comes to safer roads.
"The government was able to find approximately $4 million to build passing lanes at Toogoolawah in their budget but were unable to find funds to repair the southern end of the Brisbane Valley Hwy."
But Mr Choat said sections of the road in question would be fixed.
"In terms of the areas on the lead-up to the Geoff Fisher Bridge he (Mr Madden) is a little bit behind the eight ball," Mr Choat said.
"I took it up with the minister and said, 'This is unacceptable. Something has to be done'.
"Thanks to him they are going to rehabilitate that whole section.
"In the meantime they have reduced the speeds so that those who travel through the Somerset can be aware the surface is a bit rough.
"It is getting fixed. I have got that money and that work is going to be done."
"Regarding the stretch between Fernvale and the Blacksoil Interchange, I have been saying for years that something has to be done. It has been neglected for so long it is not funny.
"The last fundamental works were done back in 2007 and it appears the resurfacing that was done was substandard.
"I have made a number of representatives to the minister to say that we need to have a look at the full length of the Brisbane Valley Hwy particularly from the Geoff Fisher Bridge back to Blacksoil because it is just not good enough."
Mr Choat said there was resurfacing done at 2007 at Wanora but that the top level was coming away because of shoddy work seven years ago.
"They have said they are battling to play catch-up, but that doesn't mean that I am going to take the pressure off," he said.