21 June 2021
The Queensland Government has pledged $14.7 billion of funding to infrastructure programs in the 2021-2022 state budget.
With 60 per cent of this funding being spent outside Greater Brisbane, the Coomera Connector joining Coomera and Nerang is a major benefactor and has been allocated $1.5 billion, equally funded by the federal government.
The Queensland Government will continue its support of Cross River Rail which includes 5.9 kilometres of twin tunnels, while Gold Coast Light Rail Stage 3 has received more than a billion dollars.
Regionally the Rockhampton Ring Road and the Bruce Highway’s 26km Cooroy to Curra upgrade will also benefit.
10 new schools will also be built with these institutions receiving the majority share of $1.4 billion pledged to school infrastructure.
Health care in regional areas will receive a boost with the state budget allowing for $426 million in upgrades to regional hospitals, as well as the development of a new 174-bed public hospital in Springfield.
Additionally $2 billion will go towards the Renewable Energy and Hydrogen Jobs Fund, with the intention of helping Queensland reach a 50 per cent renewable target by the end of the decade.
The large financial commitment to infrastructure will increase the demand for engineers. A concern remains the shortage of personnel at all levels to fill these roles, which will only get worse if the 51 per cent of skilled migrant engineers who do not work in engineering roles are not tapped into, and the international borders remained closed.
Adding further strain on the workforce is the high probability of Queensland hosting the 2032 Olympic Games, resulting in more capital works to ensure the state has the infrastructure befitting the large-scale event.