Queenslanders demand better
Queenslanders are feeling the effects of the state’s infrastructure deficit, according to polling released by three leading industry bodies.
The poll of 1,000 Queenslanders, commissioned by Infrastructure Partnerships Australia, Infrastructure Association of Queensland, and the Property Council, has uncovered deep public concern that the State’s infrastructure needs are not being adequately met by all levels of government.
The poll has revealed that 62% of Queenslanders believe the investment and development of the state’s infrastructure is being poorly coordinated.
This sentiment has been underscored by the recent Post-Budget disagreement between the levels of government over projects such as Cross-River Rail and the Brisbane Metro.
Property Council Queensland Executive Director, Chris Mountford, said that funding infrastructure is the key challenge facing the Government as it heads towards next month’s State Budget.
“Whether it is through road and rail congestion, or just a general lack of activity in the economy, the shortage of investment in infrastructure is impacting Queenslanders,” Mr Mountford said.
“For too long the State Government has delivered the infrastructure Queensland can afford, rather than the infrastructure Queensland needs.”
Infrastructure Association of Queensland CEO, Steve Abson, said Queensland was staring down the barrel of a $2 billion funding gap for public infrastructure projects.
“We’ve had some tremendous infrastructure achievements in infrastructure in Queensland. We’ve won global awards, created a new coal seam gas export industry in record time and we’ve delivered an enviable tunnel network that has streamlined the way that commuters connect across our capital city.” Mr Abson said.
“On the flip-side, we’ve seen multi-billion dollar projects delayed through changes in government, significant delays to job-creating projects through lack of co-ordination and threats of significant contracts being cancelled after being let.”
The polling found the State’s infrastructure deficit is being felt most of all by older Queenslanders, with 70% of over-65s believing infrastructure coordination is being handled poorly.
The Pacific Motorway, Bruce Highway and Ipswich Motorway were all identified in the research as major infrastructure headaches.
Infrastructure Partnerships Australia Chief Executive, Brendan Lyon, said it is imperative that the Queensland Government invest more in infrastructure in the impending State Budget.
“Queensland is suffering from poor infrastructure, high electricity bills and massive public sector debt and needs a circuit breaker.
“Infrastructure investment should be the cushion for Queensland jobs, against the collapse of private resources projects, delivering a short-term benefit through employment and long-run benefit through better transport and hospitals and schools.
“Our polling shows that people across Queensland can see that the status quo just is not working.”