Three major highways in South Australia are set to be upgraded to improve safety and reliability of these national freight routes.
The Stuart, Augusta and Dukes highways are vital transport corridors that cater to more than 3,200 heavy freight vehicles a day, with half of the vehicles B-doubles and road trains.
Upgrading these major freight routes will help improve freight productivity through the reduction of travel times for the delivery of goods to the community and businesses and, in turn, reduce operational costs for commercial vehicles.
“The pandemic has taken its toll on Australia’s supply chain over the last three years, making it vital we invest in measures to keep our freight drivers moving, with safety always the top priority.
“These upgrades will also deliver reduced travel times for our truckies, ensuring a more efficient, smoother journey from the farmgate to wholesalers, retailers and on to consumers.
“Resilient and reliable transport is the backbone of the nation, and I am proud we are delivering this long-term project, which will essentially benefit all Australians,” Federal Infrastructure, Transport, Regional Development and Local Government Minister Catherine King said.
Initial works are already underway on the Stuart Highway near the Northern Territory border as well as along the Dukes Highway. In addition, works along Port Wakefield Highway between Adelaide and Port Wakefield as well as on Augusta Highway around Port Augusta will also be carried out as part of a $30 million investment in upgrades undertaken this financial year.
Planning will continue for the remaining upgrades and other works are also being considered including intersection upgrades, overtaking lanes, rest areas and targeted safety treatments.
More than $500 million in total has been allocated for the upgrades, jointly committed by the Australian Government ($400 million) and South Australian Government ($100 million).
“The South Australian and Australian Governments are continuing to work together to deliver better highways for the community.
“The Stuart, Augusta and Dukes are among some of our busiest highways vital for tourist and emergency services and upgrading them will make our roads safer for all users,” SA Minister for Regional Roads Geoff Brock said.
The Australian Government funding is part of the $1.5 billion National Freight Highway Upgrade Program, from the 2022-23 October Budget commitment to seal the Tanami Track in Northern Territory and Western Australia as well as upgrade nationally significant freight routes such as the Dukes, Stuart and Augusta highways, and Central Arnhem Road in the Northern Territory.
Source: Minister for Infrastructure, Transport, Regional Development and Local Government; Trailer Magazine; Big Rigs