Member for Goyder Steven Griffiths welcomed the pledge made yesterday by State Liberal Leader Steven Marshall MP of a $12.1 million investment to build an overpass at Port Wakefield, to end traffic bottlenecks and reduce road accidents at the notorious Copper Coast Highway and Augusta Highway intersection.
"I was very pleased with the announcement as it is one of many projects I have worked hard to progress in recent years, with both the Liberal Party and the Labor Government. Indeed, I hope it is the first of many such investments for our region," Mr Griffiths said.
The State Liberals' plan will see a single lane overpass constructed at the intersection, complemented by the re-routing of access roads at the intersection.
The overpass will take the Copper Coast Highway over the Augusta Highway providing better access to Port Wakefield Road for people travelling south from Yorke Peninsula as the first stage of a long term ambition to upgrade arterial roads to the Yorke Peninsula and Mid-North.
"Yorke Peninsula is one of Adelaide's favourite holiday destinations but too often the experience is marred by massive wait times as traffic banks up from the junction of the Copper Coast Highway and the Augusta Highway," said State Liberal Leader Steven Marshall when visiting Port Wakefield on Sunday.
"On a normal day the intersection is used by about 3,000 vehicles but during holiday weekends this soars to as many as 10,000 creating jams as long as 10 kilometres as vehicles travelling from Yorke Peninsula attempt to merge with traffic travelling south.
"For holiday makers there are few experiences more frustrating than inching along the Copper Coast Highway with hungry kids in the car at the end of a long weekend, and for Yorke Peninsula locals the frustration at the problems with the intersection can be an everyday fact of life.
"This investment will boost the local economy of Yorke Peninsula by attracting more visitors and improving the freight route to market for farmers produce, " Mr Marshall said.
The State Liberals have had discussions with the Federal Government about this proposal and are confident it will provide the necessary 50% of the total capital costs (estimated at $24.2 million), thus enabling a Marshall Liberal Government to move quickly if successful at the March state election.
Federal Member for Grey Rowan Ramsey welcomed the announcement by the State Liberals, saying "the project has my full support and I am confident a solid commitment will be forthcoming from the minister."
"Those who live in the north and west of the state know that is where the vast bulk of the state's natural resources are and those riches will provide the jobs which will underwrite the state's economy for generations", said Mr Ramsey.
"Consequently traffic loads will continue to grow and improving the main arterial freight routes is essential to fully exploit our natural wealth.
"This should be just the first essential step in duplication of the whole route from Port Wakefield to Port Augusta," Mr Ramsey said.