Posted on 21. Aug, 2013 in News

The Victorian Auditor General today has confirmed what families in Melbourne’s suburbs already know: that without urgent investment in outer suburban public transport and roads congestion will continue to grow, Opposition Leader Daniel Andrews said today.

Mr Andrews said the Victorian Auditor General’s report – Developing Transport Infrastructure and Services for Population Growth Areas – was further evidence the Napthine Government’s $8 billion tunnel will do nothing to improve transport options or reduce congestion in Melbourne suburbs.

“In fact when Denis Napthine spends $8 billion on this tunnel it means that other transport projects like new train lines, roads and tram lines that are urgently needed now won’t be built for decades,” Mr Andrews said.

“This is $8 billion of Victorian taxpayers money on a tunnel that no one wants, that no one will use, from a Premier that no one voted for.

“If Denis Napthine was convinced that this is the right project then he should take it to the next election and let all Victorians decide.”

“The Auditor General has blown the whistle on the complete inadequacy of transport in key growth areas across Melbourne.”

“In his scathing report the Victorian Auditor General said that despite population in the growth areas, estimated to grow by 77 per cent, there is ‘no clear state-wide strategy’ to address transport needs.

Mr Andrews said this was the second year in a row the Victorian Auditor General had slammed the Napthine Government for failing to have a state-wide strategy to improve transport.

“The report found that Government funding for outer suburban road funding had been cut from Labor’s $127 million over two years to around $106 million over three.

“It also found that a plan to fund high priority low cost transport infrastructure and service improvements in Melbourne suburbs estimated to cost between $75 million and $90 million had been shelved because of ‘limitations of state resources, and a decision to fund other state priorities’.

The Victorian Auditor General also highlighted key investments funded by Labor including:

• Extending the metro rail network for Sydenham, Craigieburn and South Morang
• Extension of the electrified network to Sunbury
• New stations at Lynbrook, Cardinia Road and Williams Landing
• Regional Rail Link
• Pakenham Bypass
• Deer Park Bypass
• Craigieburn Bypass
• M1 Monash City Link Westgate upgrade
• M80 Ring Road Upgrade

“This report clearly shows Denis Napthine is out of his depth when it comes to providing public transport solutions for our state and providing road improvements that reduce congestion,” Mr Andrews said.

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