As the Federal Election edges closer, we have talked to some of the state’s major political representatives about their road priorities in each electorate.
To have your say on the road issues that matter most to you, fill in our survey and have your concerns emailed directly to your local candidates.
JULIE COLLINS MHR, LABOR, FRANKLIN
When Labor was last in government, we secured funding for the construction of the Kingston bypass, the Huon Highway and Summerleas Road intersection upgrade and the new ramps connecting the East Derwent and Tasman highways.
These upgrades have made a real difference, improving safety and reducing congestion for Hobart motorists. Our priority will be to continue to deliver by securing new investment for infrastructure that makes our roads safer while ensuring Hobart motorists aren’t getting stuck in traffic for longer.
A proper solution for the Hobart Airport roundabout would help alleviate congestion for motorists and improve safety.
SENATOR STEVE MARTIN, NATIONALS, BRADDON
As the only party exclusively dedicated to representing regional Australians, the Nationals are keenly aware that better and safer country roads are critical to our mission of bridging the divide with cities. Nationals Leader and Deputy Prime Minister, Michael McCormack, is the federal minister responsible for roads and road safety, so we have a very strong voice at the Cabinet table.
The 2018 Federal Budget included a $3.5 billion Roads of Strategic Importance initiative and the massive upgrade of the Midland Highway is fully funded. I expect further good news for roads in regional Tasmania in the next Federal Budget in April.
ANDREW WILKIE MHR, INDEPENDENT, CLARK (formerly Denison)
Greater Hobart desperately needs a strategic plan, in particular to tackle traffic and infrastructure challenges.
A good start would be the restoration of passenger rail from Hobart’s waterfront to Bridgewater and beyond, as well as ferries on the River Derwent. Hobart also needs to be more bicycle and pedestrian-friendly, which should include separated cycleways and more urban green spaces.
All levels of government need to work together better to ensure that traffic flows as efficiently as possible on all major roads, and in particular Macquarie St, Davey St and the Southern Outlet. However, any improvements to particular choke points need to be part of a holistic upgrade to the traffic network, because otherwise it could just make the problem worse.
All levels of government also need to invest more in electric vehicle charging stations … and have an eye to the future and proactively plan for technologies like autonomous vehicles.
SENATOR PETER WHISH-WILSON, GREENS, BASS
To help prevent serious injury on the roads, we want to see more infrastructure investment in high risk and developing risk areas, 100% coverage of intersections with red light cameras, and more resources to build partitioned bike lanes.
We welcome the findings of the inquiry into the National Road Safety Strategy, and encourage politicians from all parties to take notice of this expert advice.
Working on fixing blackspots is essential, but just as important is making sure we prevent new blackspots from occurring.
We support the installation of red light cameras at every traffic light in Launceston. People need to know that if they ever run a red light they will face a fine and demerit points. Also the investment in bike lanes, particularly those that separate bikes from the traffic flow. We’ve made progress, but we need to do more to ensure the safety of cyclists.
We’re also committed to ensuring we do everything we can for those affected by road trauma.
SENATOR JONATHON DUNIAM, LIBERALS, LYONS
The Federal Government has committed to a range of projects including $461 million towards the replacement of the Bridgewater Bridge, $400 million towards upgrading the Midland Highway and $400 million of funding towards roads of strategic importance.
The Federal Government has been working with the State Government to identify vital infrastructure projects including projects to address the congestion issues in the fast growing south-east corner of Lyons.
This includes progressing the $30 million airport roundabout interchange, where works have already started, and addressing congestion at the Midway Point intersection and roads which connect to it.
We’re also working with the State Government on supporting the infrastructure needs of the north, including upgrading the connection between the Midland Highway and the Bass Highway and sections of the Bass Highway around Deloraine. This is of course in addition to $3.4 million of smaller road safety projects funded through the Black Spot Program.