Progress on Cross River Rail welcomed

The Property Council of Australia has welcomed today’s announcement by the Queensland Government regarding the Cross River Rail project.

“The Government’s announcement of the project alignment, a delivery authority, and their commitment to undertake the necessary planning work to seek Federal funding by mid-year is an important step in realising this key project,” says Queensland Executive Director of the Property Council, Chris Mountford.

“Everyone is well aware that the city’s rail network has serious looming capacity constraint. 

“That is why it is vital that Cross River Rail progresses and is delivered within the next decade. It is not just about facilitating the movement of people, it is critical infrastructure if we are to increase the productivity of the south east and unlock significant economic growth opportunities. 

“An additional rail crossing over the Brisbane River has near-universal support with Infrastructure Australia identifying the project as a priority piece of nationally significant infrastructure.

“Clearly this project has been presented in various iterations over the past five years and has been subject to political cycles. 
“As a result the property sector, Queensland’s largest industry, has been seeking certainty on the alignment, delivery method and timeframes of this crucial project for many years.

“Important long-term infrastructure projects simply cannot get off the ground when there is the level of politicization we have seen in the past on this project. 

“We certainly hope that the proposed delivery authority will be the catalyst that takes the politics out of this project into the future. Now is the time for everyone to support this critical piece of infrastructure for Queensland. 

“With the State’s new plan of attack, and a Federal Election around the corner, this may prove to be a golden opportunity to secure funding for this game-changing piece of infrastructure.

“However, we do note that ‘value capture’ opportunities will be explored as part of the State Government Delivery Authority’s investigations of the project. The Property Council continues to caution the Government on the need to ensure this funding model does not become simply another tax.

“We look forward to further discussions with the State on all aspects of the planning and delivery of this project,” Mr Mountford said.