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Federal Labor promises $30m for Canberra airport road upgrades

By Glimmertwins - 14 October 2007 31

According to the ABC Federal Labor says it is time the Commonwealth stepped in to help ease the traffic congestion around the Canberra airport.

The ALP’s Transport spokesman Martin Ferguson, has promised $30 million to upgrade the road network if Labor wins the election, on top of the $13 million already promised by the ACT Government and the airport.

Mr Ferguson says the Federal Government has been neglecting ACT roads.

“This piece of transport corridor requires Commonwealth assistance, with the private sector Canberra International Airport and also the ACT Government,” he said.

“That’s about real dollars to fix real local problems.”

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31 Responses to
Federal Labor promises $30m for Canberra airport road upgrades
ant 9:30 pm 15 Oct 07

Snow is contributing some money to the road improvement. However, Snow’s people have also done up the plans, and are running the project. Result? No encroachment on Airport land, it all happens on public land but also encroaches on residential land in Pialligo. And the gist of the work is enlargement and grandifying of the airport entrance. It won’t fix the congestion.

But the airport is driving the ACT/airport roadworks, and that should worry people. They’re private, they’re unaccountable, and they’re pushing their own barrow. I’m very concerned that an elected government can abrogate their responsibility to govern and gatekeep quite so easily.

The traffic disruption while the work is being done will be horrific, and that the work won’t significantly improve things needs to be recognised.

The Labor plan to extend the scope of the works is promising. Much of the trouble happens at the north/south axis, Majura Road onto Moreshead, and the extra demand of the airport CBD plugged the whole thing up.

utah 5:47 pm 15 Oct 07


Your party, and the Nationals, caused this problem by:
* Selling the airport (for much less than it was worth, from what I can tell)
* Not placing sufficient zoning restrictions on it
* Moving a number of Federal Government departments out there, so that the new owners would have some income while the rest of the development was being built.

While I agree that the nearby roads need substantial improvement, I don’t think spending taxpayer’s money is the way to go. Perhaps the money could come from Coalition coffers instead? A sort of, “taking ownership of your actions” approach? Terry Snow seems set to make a bundle over the next 20 years – perhaps you could hit him up for a loan…

Maelinar 8:32 am 15 Oct 07

We are a custom-built city that is meant to be a beacon of good function and design.

Sadly, this does not appear to be the case, and it would also appear that funding has dried up.

Any government should be taking immediate steps to rectify this situation, as the rest of Australia looks to Canberra for ideology and guidance.

Pandy 10:47 pm 14 Oct 07


Your party caused the mess at the airport. Your party needs to spend real dollars fixing it. And not just on the road that goes from the airport to Parliament House.

What Brendan Nelson said about Defence HQ and the ACT government needing to chip in to fix yhe traffic problems around there, does not endear me to vote for you.

You could really do something marvellous by saying you will build either the Majura Parkway or light rail down the Majura Valley to solve the problem.

Cameron 9:53 pm 14 Oct 07

Forgive my ignorance of the situation – I clearly had a limited understanding of who was in fact responsible.

So: Local Labor are promising $13 million to do not much, and Federal Labor are promising $30 million to actually fix the problem?

Why not throw the $13 million towards something worthwhile (like partially dealing with the actual problem) and then the Federal Govt (regardless of the election outcome) won’t have to commit as much.

ant 9:44 pm 14 Oct 07

the airport debacle is the fault of the federal government, and Snow. Snow bought the airport and proceeded to develop a CBD there. Usually, this kind of devlopment is done as part of an overall plan, with infrastructure built to handle the increased volumes. The ACT government didn’t have a say in Snow’s big development. The airport comes under the federal government’s balliwick, and thay happily allowed him to do whatever he wanted. Result is the mess at the airport.

The new plan to fix the roads announced this week by the airport and ACT gov’t is a very small project, which will beautify and grandify the airprt entrance, but do little to fix the traffic jams, especially those on Moreshead drive and Majura Road. Teh Labor idea seems to be focussing on those two problem areas.

cranky 8:45 pm 14 Oct 07

My understanding is that the Feds are responsible for the national highways. For example, they have decided that the New England highway is the major highway from Sydney to Brisbane, hence the dogs breakfast of funding the Pacific Highway, and the Hume getting the nod over the Princes Highway.

The only other dedicated Federal funding I am aware of is the Black Spot programme, and don’t they milk that for every cents worth of publicity.

I’m not sure that any funds are available to the ACT outside the blackspot programme. Maybe we should be grateful for any contributions from the Feds.

Ingeegoodbee 7:09 pm 14 Oct 07

Couple of points:

You don’t really spend money on UN biosphere’s – it’s a recognition thing more than anything else – you nominate what you’ve got and say, do we qualify as a biosphere reserve?

Other than that, the airport traffic screw-up is a bit different from your run-of-the-mill road issue as the fundamental reason for the traffic problem is the fact that Commonwealth deliberately allowed the development of the airport site contrary to the express wishes of elected ACT government over the past decade – so I guess it would make sense that the Commonwealth fix up the mess that it created.

Bitching about roads in the ACT is a bit rich anyway, you only have to go just about anywhere else in this country to realize that we have pretty good roads.

Cameron 6:43 pm 14 Oct 07

They should absolutely spend it here, and as Troy has pointed out, they do. My point is that if there’s anyone to blame for the roads to the airport being a disgrace, it’s the ACT Govt, not the Federal.

sepi 6:32 pm 14 Oct 07

The Fed govt spends money on roads in other states – why not here?

Cameron 5:18 pm 14 Oct 07

I too think the ACT Govt is more accountable for this one than the feds – irrespective of which party.

skaboy12 5:14 pm 14 Oct 07

Why is it that these people think that it is the Federal Governments responsibility to fix everything for them??

It’s about time the ACT Government started to take responsibility for themselves and deal with thier own issues. Best way for this to happen is to get rid of Nohope and his band of morons

TroyWilliams 5:11 pm 14 Oct 07

G’day all

For some time I’ve been actively campaigning for better roads within the Fraser Electorate, including upgrades to roads surrounding Canberra airport.

In the 2007/08 budget the Australian Government committed to spending $58.8 million over the next four years ($5.9 million in 2007-08) to redevelop Constitution Avenue and replace the Russell roundabout with an overpass. In addition, the Australian Government is providing $19.8 million in 2007-08 for other roads in the Territory.

Troy Williams
Liberal Candidate for Fraser

Nemo 2:46 pm 14 Oct 07

“Mr Ferguson says the Federal Government has been neglecting ACT roads.”

Perhaps the ACT Govt needs to spend more money on roads and less on statues, monuments, and creating UN biospheres.

Pandy 10:50 am 14 Oct 07

If you look at what Gungahlin Al said on youtube about fixing the Mjura Rd, and what JR said about the same issue, they would scrap the spending on the roads.

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