The Palaszczuk Labor Government is playing politics with people's lives after freezing critical road upgrades leading to the Sunshine Coast University Hospital, the State Opposition says.
Minister for Main Roads Mark Bailey was asked by the LNP Opposition in Parliament whether the Palaszczuk Labor Government would upgrade the Mooloolah River Interchange and shrugged off concerns about the need for the life-saving upgrade.
Shadow Main Roads Minister Fiona Simpson said the LNP had a $440m plan for the road upgrade designed by the Main Roads Department and the new Labor Government had dumped it for reckless spiteful politics.
“Labor has frozen the state's infrastructure budget by cutting a billion dollars a year from capital works – and now after 12 months of dithering – they've cut the Sunshine Coast hospital road upgrades from $440m down to $22m. That's a disgrace. But what do you expect from a Roads Minister who hasn't owned a car in years?” she said.
“The LNP released the redesigned Mooloolah River Interchange project in 2014 and committed to funding it after years of it not being in Labor's infrastructure plans. However, Minister Bailey has thrown away the work done by the Department of Main Roads in developing the new plan – for a cheap bandaid which won't fix the problem.
“This project would have created 2,500 construction jobs and unlocked this bottleneck in one of the fastest growing regions in Queensland,” Ms Simpson said
“Instead Minister Bailey is fast becoming Labor’s ‘Minister for Traffic Congestion’.
Ms Simpson said locals should not forget that the Palaszczuk Labor Government has already managed to bungle the delivery of the Sunshine Coast University Hospital so badly another five months are needed just to open the doors.
“Buses, paramedics, doctors, nurses, hospital staff, patients and local residents will all be sharing the same single lane road to the hospital,” she said.
“Labor has no plan to tackle congestion and the issues on Kawana Way are just a preview of what Sunshine Coast motorists can expect when the Sunshine Coast University Hospital eventually opens.
“I suggest that this Main Roads Minister comes to visit the Sunshine Coast in peak traffic and provide a personal guarantee that no ambulance or patient going to the hospital will be caught in traffic under his plan.”