Waite electorate road upgrades

Mr DULUK (Waite) (15:30): I rise today to talk about an issue that has plagued my constituents for many years, and that is the lack of road investment in my wonderful electorate. Under the past 16 years of Labor government, my people were ignored and our roads were not upgraded.

However, under the new Marshall Liberal government, I am extremely pleased to see the Mitcham Hills road corridor receiving funding in last year's budget, being a $16.5 million road funding upgrade in addition to the $3.5 million allocated to fixing the Blackwood roundabout. The $3.5 million Blackwood roundabout upgrade, which is nearly completed, will improve traffic efficiency and safety as well as pedestrian access through this high-traffic area. The upgrade will include construction of a new, larger roundabout, road surfacing, new line marking, and lighting upgrades.

As well, the Blackwood roundabout project has seen the restoration of the soldier at the Blackwood War Memorial, and I would like to thank the fantastic team at Artlab for their work on this historic stone monument. A complex process was undertaken to conserve the respected soldier, who has recently been brought back into position in his new home on the roundabout and will be unveiled just before ANZAC Day. Thank you so much to the community, who for many years has lobbied and fought for the upgrade of the Blackwood roundabout. It is finally being delivered by a Marshall Liberal government.

The Mitcham Hills road corridor requires upgrading to improve safety for residents and commuters. In the 2018-19 state Liberal budget, $16.5 million was invested into improving traffic flow throughout that corridor. This is addressing urgent infrastructure needs that for too long were neglected by the former government. This significant investment along these roads will ease delays and deliver safety to motorists.

Some of the road projects that will be undertaken for improvement include upgrading the safety and operation of the Main Road and Russell Street intersection in Belair, alleviating safety concerns and reducing traffic congestion at the intersection of Shepherds Hill Road, Brighton Parade and Waite Street in Blackwood, upgrading key lighting along sections of the corridor and working with the City of Mitcham to prioritise other upgrades, including looking at the Laffers Road intersection and the James Road intersection as well.

Almost 10 years ago, a state parliamentary report recommended upgrading the Mitcham Hills road corridor to ensure that residents could leave quickly in the event of a major bushfire. Many sections along the corridor cause concern and frustration for local commuters, and it has taken 10 years for this issue finally to be addressed by a Liberal government. I am so glad that we are getting on with implementing the report of a parliamentary committee that made its recommendations more than 10 years ago.

Another fantastic announcement in the electorate of Waite was made a fortnight ago by the Premier and the Prime Minister to spend $61 million upgrading the intersection of Cross Road and Fullarton Road. This intersection takes 60,000 cars per day, and so many of those cars start their commute at the bottom of my electorate, through Coromandel Valley, come through the Mitcham Hills road corridor and go through that intersection on their commute to work. Of course, the east-west traffic is on a big freight corridor, as part of the Cross Road intersection, so it is a fantastic announcement by the federal government and by our state Liberal government.

There are so many projects happening around our state. The upgrade of the Springbank Road intersection and the Magill Road/Portrush Road intersection are all funding commitments into our communities and into our road networks that are made possible by the harmonious working relationship between the federal Morrison Liberal government and the state Marshall Liberal government.

That is what is so important. That is what the people of South Australia want to see: they want to see collaboration and they want to see governments of all persuasions working together, and I know that is the formula that is working right now for South Australia. It did not work before because the former Labor government did not want to work with the federal Liberal government. Should there ever be a future Labor government in 2030 or 2040, God forbid, I am not sure how they will work with a Marshall Liberal government here.

Another fantastic announcement recently was the upgrade of Blackwood Road and the push-button crossing there. That is a great win for parents and families with children at Scotch College and the local residents of Torrens Park who are seeing a much improved safety project as part of the Way2Go project. I must thank the department (Department of Planning, Transport and Infrastructure) for working with me and the community in recent months to see that happening. The Liberal government is delivering on bus congestion and improving road safety in our communities.