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Illawarra’s transport connectivity lags


Release Date: 19/08/2014
A recent study completed by PricewaterhouseCoopers shows that the Illawarra’s transport connectivity lags behind other similar regions in NSW, Queensland and Victoria. Based on an assessment of the network coverage and service quality, Illawarra’s transport links score 25 – 30% lower.
 
The key weaknesses identified are slow road and rail speeds to Sydney, inadequate cover of rail freight network and topographical constraints on the main rail freight corridor.
 
“This report highlights the daily costs to business in the Illawarra from having poor transport links to Sydney and within the region. Over 95% of local businesses want better transport links to Sydney. If the speed and frequency of existing transport services were improved to at least the average observed in other similar regions across Australia, the annual savings and benefits would be at least $150 million per annum,” said Ms Debra Murphy, CEO Illawarra Business Chamber.
 
The study also highlighted that there would be broader benefits, not captured in this estimate from greater access to employment opportunities, increasing population and creating additional business and trade opportunities.
 
“Improving transport connectivity internally and externally to the region is not only important to helping the economy diversify towards knowledge and service-based sectors, but is also one of the key tools for addressing the low labour force participation rate and average household incomes experienced in the Illawarra.
 
“There are strong concerns that without effective planning and action now to address this issue, the projected expansion in the passenger and freight movement task over the next 20 years will see the transport and logistics costs for business increase significantly,” concluded Ms Murphy.
 
The findings of this study will be discussed by expert panellists at an IBC Executive lunch on Friday 22 August:
·         Jim Betts, CEO Infrastructure NSW
·         The Hon. Minister John Ajaka, Minister for the Illawarra
·         Mark Streeting, Partner PricewaterhouseCoopers
 
For further details see: http://events.illawarrabusiness.com.au/



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