QUEENSLAND'S highest priority infrastructure project, Cross River Rail is a step closer with the introduction of a Bill into parliament to establish the Cross River Rail Delivery Authority.
Deputy Premier and Minister for Infrastructure, Local Government and Planning Jackie Trad said the milestone comes after the launch of the State Government's Advancing Our Cities and Regions strategy.
"Cross River Rail is this Government's highest priority infrastructure project, presenting a unique opportunity to transform South East Queensland," Mr Trad said.
"The Cross River Rail Delivery Authority will be established as an independent statutory body to lead the development, procurement and delivery of Cross River Rail and drive urban renewal within the economic and development corridor.
"The Authority's functions and powers have been designed to ensure that it will be able to deliver both the rail infrastructure for Cross River Rail as well as maximise the broader city building and economic benefits that arise from the project.
"This is essential as the Cross River Rail corridor alone will boost the economy by $70 billion and support more than 85,000 jobs.
"Importantly, the Authority will ensure that Cross River Rail stays on track and is not derailed by politics."
Ms Trad said the State Government was focussed on ensuring Cross River Rail became a reality after it was abandoned by the previous government.
"In less than 18 months, the Palaszczuk Government rescoped the project, published the new alignment and submitted the business case to Infrastructure Australia and the Turnbull Government for consideration," Ms Trad said.
"We have allocated $850 million - the largest single allocation to Cross River Rail yet - in order to start funding negotiations with the federal government and delivery arrangements with the private sector.
The Bill also establishes the Cross River Rail Delivery Fund so that any proceeds from associated development can be reinvested in this city shaping project.
The Authority's board will consist of ten members, including up to 6 external expert directors. The Cross River Rail technical team will continue to operate within the Department of Local Government, Infrastructure and Planning as the legislation is progressed through parliament.
More information about the Cross River Rail project is available from <http://www.crossriverrail.qld.gov.au/>.