MEDIA RELEASE: Creating jobs and building better infrastructure for Canberra

The Australian and Australian Capital Territory Governments are joining forces to support local jobs by starting work on several small-scale community facility upgrades. 

Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Infrastructure, Transport and Regional Development Michael McCormack said the Local Roads and Community Infrastructure Program (LRCI) supported local councils to deliver priority local road and community infrastructure projects across Australia.

“In the 2020-21 Budget, the Australian Government set aside $1 billion for these types of projects,” the Deputy Prime Minister said.

“This builds on the existing $500 million LRCI Program announced as a part of the Australian Government’s Phase 1 infrastructure stimulus package, which received strong community and local Government support.

“The Australian Government continues to roll out these types of projects across the nation under our record $110 billion infrastructure investment plan, laying the foundations for economic recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic.”

Senator for the ACT Zed Seselja welcomed works getting underway on an additional $16.5 million of important local projects across the ACT. 

“Repairing paths, and improving community facilities and sportsgrounds make an enormous difference to the many Canberrans who access these facilities, as well as bringing local jobs, and a much-needed boost for our local economy,” Senator Seselja said. 

“Today’s announcement of $16.5 million for these projects brings the Australian Government’s funding to the ACT through the LRCI program to $24.5 million this financial year.”

“This is a continued product of the Australian Government’s investment bonanza for Canberra, with more than $1.4 billion committed to infrastructure projects across the Territory in recent years,” Senator Seselja said. 

Minister for Regional Health, Regional Communications and Local Government Mark Coulton said these works included footpath, cycling and road improvements.

“We are pleased to see shovels hit the ground on these works in the ACT,” Minister Coulton said.

“We are supporting local jobs and backing our hard-hit construction businesses while delivering lasting infrastructure that will help our communities continue to grow and prosper well into the future.

“Road maintenance works, including hot asphalt patching and resealing, will also keep road users safer.”

Minister for Transport and City Services Chris Steel said that the ACT Government’s focus was to use the funding to support local jobs whilst delivering much needed upgrades to local community facilities, assets and amenities.

“The ACT Government has allocated the ACT’s $16.5 million share to provide a diverse range of work that will create jobs and deliver real community benefits,” Minister Steel said.

“Many of these projects are underway, will others shovel ready, and further construction tenders will be released to provide a pipeline of work for the next 12 months.

“Improvements to be delivered include upgrades to existing cycle and walking paths around Canberra as well as walking trails on Mount Taylor, playground and skate park improvements, Lake Ginninderra foreshore upgrades, public toilet upgrades, more urban tree planting and improvements to existing sporting facilities.”

“Our jobs and economic recovery plan sets an ambitious target to grow our employment base to 250,000 by 2025 and funding these projects will continue to provide a strong platform for us to achieve this goal,” Minister Steel said. 

Footpath/cycling/road improvements

  • $2.6 million in funding for path maintenance to support walking and cycling, including replacing and repairing shared community paths
  • $4 million in surge funding for road maintenance, including hot asphalt patching and resealing to repair recent rain damage and prevent future damage
  • upgrades have been funded at Mount Taylor Nature Reserve’s zig-zag track including resurfacing and reinstatement of the stairs.

Community recreation and open space improvements

  • $1 million to purchase 3,000 plants to enhance Canberra’s living infrastructure in areas of low canopy cover and to replace ageing trees
  • $1.26 million to install new shade sails and fencing at priority playgrounds, to make these spaces cooler, safer and more inclusive
  • Lake Ginninderra’s swimming area will be revitalised with a top up of beach sand, landscaping improvements and an outdoor shower
  • a new competition standard half pipe will be constructed at the Belconnen skate park on Emu Bank.

Sportsground improvements

  • new LED lighting will be installed at Bonner Neighbourhood Oval
  • upgrades to irrigation will be undertaken at Curtin District Playing Fields
  • $1 million in upgrades to sporting change rooms will be undertaken to make them female friendly in accordance with ACT Government Guidelines (locations to be determined).

Facility improvements (includes safety, accessibility and infrastructure improvements)

  • the Chifley Community Hub will be refurbished 
  • upgrades will be undertaken to the foyer, reception and kiosk upgrade splash park at Dickson Pool and upgrades to chainmesh fence and improve accessible entry at Manuka Pool
  • toilets at Lyneham local shops and Colbee Court in Phillip will be replaced
  • new fencing, drainage and pavement improvements will be installed at the Mugga Lane Resource Management Centre in Symonston, and a new driveway to allow the public to safely and easily drop-off mattresses at Soft Landings Hume for recycling.
  • the campground amenities block will be refurbished and gutters and an aged air conditioning unit replaced at Exhibition Park in Canberra
  • upgrades will see the installation of smoke detector heads, and improved security fencing and concrete paths at GIO Stadium
  • security landscaping, scoreboard repairs and thermal and smoke detector upgrades will be delivered at Manuka Oval
  • $2.185 million will be provided for upgrades at the National Arboretum including improved security, upgraded wheelchair accessible paths in the Central Valley and Himalayan Cedar Forest and upgrades to approximately 4.5 kilometres of unsealed roads to improve access during wet weather
  • courtyard upgrades will be undertaken at Dickson Library and the ACT Heritage library will receive internal upgrades
  • further safety and maintenance work will be undertaken at community facilities to be determined 

[ENDS] 

The Hon Michael McCormack MP
Deputy Prime Minister
Minister for Infrastructure, Transport and Regional Development
Leader of The Nationals
Federal Member for Riverina

The Hon Mark Coulton MP
Minister for Regional Health, Regional Communications and Local Government
Federal Member for Parkes

Senator the Hon Zed Seselja
Minister for International Development and the Pacific
Senator for the Australian Capital Territory

Chris Steel MLA
ACT Minister for Transport and City Services