By Samuel Smith
Published: Wednesday, June 23, 2021
The 2021-22 State Budget has been handed down and we’ve dissected it to see where the government is spending money.
The biggest win for RAA members, and all road users, is an increase in road maintenance funding, with next year’s budget swelling from $175 million to $283 million.
RAA lobbied hard for improvements to the state’s road network in our State Budget submission, aiming to reduce injuries and fatalities on our roads, as well as improve the flow of traffic.
In response, the government announced funding packages featuring significant infrastructure investments.
RAA Senior Manager of Safety and Infrastructure, Charles Mountain, said RAA’s lobbying for increased road maintenance funding had paid off.
“This extra money will potentially reduce road trauma, improve transport efficiency and encourage tourists to visit regional SA,’’ he said.
“The money, which will no longer be spent on the grade separation of the Hove level crossing, could still be used to tackle traffic congestion along the Brighton Rd corridor and at other key locations,” he added.
Mr Mountain also praised the decision to invest in improving roads on Kangaroo Island.
“The $40 million announced for roads on Kangaroo Island is also welcomed to improve safety and access in this important tourist and agricultural region,’’ he said.
As the state heads to an election next year, RAA will continue to advocate in the interest of our members.
RAA also supports the government’s decision to increase the capacity of the North-South Corridor tunnels.
This will provide 3 lanes and shoulders in each direction to cope with forecast increases in traffic flows.
“It’s logical to meet the modelling of the traffic volumes expected to use the tunnels, as it will future-proof this massive infrastructure project,’’ Mr Mountain said.
Other major State Budget announcements off the back of RAA lobbying included:
- $22.5 million committed to match the Commonwealth Government’s funding upgrade of the intersection of Marion Rd and Sir Donald Bradman Dr.
- $100 million to complete the next stage of the duplication of the Augusta Hwy from near Nantawarra to Lochiel.
- Business case development for the Greater Adelaide freight bypass, with the aim of ultimately reducing freight traffic on the South Eastern Fwy into the city.
- Funding for driver training programs.
- $99 million for a railway station refresh program and the rollout of next generation ticket validators on trams and buses.