Budget billions to flow for neglected Sydney roads - triSearch

Budget billions to flow for neglected Sydney roads

By Sam McKeith

The federal government has pledged $1.9 billion for road works in Sydney’s west after fears the area would lose out due to a infrastructure spending shake-up.

Almost $2 billion will be spent on roads in Sydney’s west after some projects in the fast-growing area were put at risk in a federal infrastructure spending overhaul.

The funding, announced on Monday ahead of the May 14 federal budget provides money for 14 fresh projects and extra spending on two existing projects in an effort to support a “fundamental shift” of jobs and growth to the urban region.

It follows NSW government criticism in 2023 that a Commonwealth infrastructure funding shake-up had left the state $1.4 billion worse off, with planned road upgrades the hardest hit.

Federal Infrastructure Minister Catherine King said the $1.9 billion budget commitment would help pay for upgrades to Mamre Rd, Elizabeth Drive, Garfield Rd East, Memorial Ave and Appin Rd in Sydney’s west.

There would also be $147 million for western Sydney road planning to ensure infrastructure kept pace with the region’s growing population.

“Whilst there was some money allocated to planning only for roads in this district, there had been very little money put into actual construction,” Ms King told reporters.

NSW Deputy Premier Prue Car described the funding as “brilliant news” for the people of western Sydney. 

“For far too long we have had to put up with sitting in traffic jams to get anywhere, to get our children to school, to get to work, to get to employment opportunities, to get home again,” she said.

“Previous governments did not invest in the infrastructure as the population exploded in our communities.”

The federal infrastructure funding overhaul affected several key road projects in the area, including money for the M7 to M12 motorway interchange to provide better road access to Western Sydney Airport.

The motorway is already under construction and the NSW government has pledged to complete the work.

Business Western Sydney executive director David Borger said it was pleasing to see overall funding for the region’s roads had been reinstated.

“It was a mistake to cut the funding to begin with but it’s good to see the federal government come back to its commitment to invest in Western Sydney,” he said.

A lack of infrastructure spending in the area surrounding the under-construction Western Sydney Airport has been identified as a major obstacle to development in the precinct, which is due to include 10,000 homes and scope for 20,000 workers.

Liverpool mayor Ned Mannoun, whose council area covers much of the airport precinct, said the funding was welcome but only represented a band-aid solution for the neglected region.

‘With the Bradfield (airport city) master plan being released recently, funding for road upgrades to the aerotropolis is desperately needed to ensure people can get to the jobs that will be created,” he said.

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