Ipswich Mayor Teresa Harding has pressed the case for the Ipswich to Springfield Public Transport Corridor in a meeting with Deputy Prime Minister Michael McCormack on Thursday.
Mr McCormack visited Ripley Town Centre where Mayor Harding gave a presentation on the significance of the transport corridor.
Mayor Harding said current and future Ipswich residents were relying on the Federal Government’s commitment to the project to ensure planning was not delayed any further.
Last year Council completed the first stage of the project analysis however in order to keep the project progressing, a detailed options analysis now needs to be completed, which will cost around $2.5 million.
“Our advocacy efforts have secured $1 million from the State Government and I have asked the Federal Government for $1.5 million,” Mayor Harding said.
“This is a small price to pay to progress a nationally significant transport corridor to the next stage of planning.
“Our fastest growing communities between Ipswich, Ripley, Redbank Plains and Springfield will rapidly transform over the coming years and residents need to be connected to jobs, education and other public services.
“If we do nothing, the local road network will fail by 2031 and it will cost the national economy more than $1 billion in productivity losses by 2036.”
The Ipswich to Springfield public transport corridor would include up to nine new rail stations between Ipswich Central and Springfield Central.
Deputy Mayor Marnie Doyle, who also attended the meeting, said it would benefit Ipswich as well as the broader south-east region, Queensland and the nation.
“Our city’s population is projected to grow at four per cent per annum, compared to 1.6 per cent for Queensland one per cent for Australia,” Cr Doyle said.
“With approximately 70 per cent of the population growth in Ipswich occurring between Ipswich and Springfield, this public transport corridor is vital to easing the burden on our road network and keeping our community moving.
“This is nation building infrastructure. Locally, it will ensure the people of Ipswich keep our great lifestyle as the region grows and deliver jobs and vital services.
“There will be improved travel times, economic and employment opportunity along the corridor, diversified housing supply and reduced congestion.”
Senator Paul Scarr, Mayor Teresa Harding, Deputy Prime Minister Michael McCormack, Ipswich Region Chamber of Commerce president Phillip Bell and Deputy Mayor Marnie Doyle
The strategic assessment for the Ipswich to Springfield Public Transport Corridor project is currently being reviewed by Infrastructure Australia for inclusion on the Infrastructure Priority List.
Also in attendance at Thursday’s visit were Queensland Senator Paul Scarr, Ipswich Deputy Mayor Marnie Doyle, Sekisui House Ripley Town Centre development manager Taku Hashimoto, Ipswich Region Chamber of Commerce president Phillip Bell and Ripley community representatives.