INFRASTRUCTURE Australia has identified 100 projects and initiatives as national priorities in a newly revised Infrastructure Priority List, which is the authoritative list of nationally-significant infrastructure investments Australia needs over the next 15 years.
Based on data from the Australian Infrastructure Audit and extensive consultation with State and Territory Governments, the Priority List provides independent, evidence-based advice on the projects that will most benefit Australian communities.
"This is the infrastructure that Australia needs—to boost our quality of life and our economy. The Infrastructure Priority List identifies 100 major infrastructure proposals that have substantial strategic merit and national importance," said Infrastructure Australia Chairman, Mark Birrell.
"The newly revised List features projects in urban centres and across the country that will improve connectivity and productivity. It now includes seven High Priority and 11 Priority Projects and the highest ever number of projects with approved business cases.
"A notable inclusion on the List is a proposal to renew central Hobart through the relocation of the University of Tasmania's STEM Facilities to the CBD. It is the first education project to be approved by the independent Infrastructure Australia Board and identified as a Priority Project.
"This visionary proposal by the University has been assessed by Infrastructure Australia as nationally-significant because it would boost Australia's STEM skills and research capability and further support the development of high-value science, technology, engineering and mathematics related industries in the Hobart CBD.
"We have also added another important project in the Western Sydney Priority Growth Area, the Northern Road Upgrade, to the Priority List. After the Infrastructure Australia Board's recent approval of the business cases for Western Sydney Airport and Stage 2 of the Bringelly Road Upgrade, the addition of this project is another important step in harnessing the expected population and employment growth in Western Sydney.
"The progressive upgrade of the Bruce Highway in Queensland has long been recognised by Infrastructure Australia as a national priority. Following rigorous assessment by our Board, upgrades to the Cooroy to Curra and Mackay Ring Road sections of the Bruce Highway are now listed as Priority Projects. We look forward to receiving and assessing business cases for the remaining sections of the Highway," Mr Birrell said.
The updated Priority List also includes 25 High Priority Initiatives and 57 Priority Initiatives. These are proposals that have been identified to potentially address a nationally-significant problem, but require further development.
New High Priority Initiatives on the List include mass transit options for Parramatta to Sydney CBD (NSW) and the remaining sections of Ipswich Motorway Rocklea-Darra (QLD). The redevelopment of Sydney's Central Station (NSW), Brisbane to Gold Coast Transport Corridor Upgrades (QLD) and the Wellington Dam water infrastructure development (WA) are also listed as Priority Initiatives.
Infrastructure Australia advises on national infrastructure priorities and assesses the economic merits of projects with fully-developed business cases. All funding decisions are made by the governments or the private sector.