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Funding battle continues over heavy rail to Maroochydore


Thousand of jobs are tipped to be supported by new and ongoing infrastructure projects on the Sunshine Coast, thanks to $819.4 million put aside in the latest State Budget.

Treasurer Cameron Dick's place for the new financial year includes $41.3 million towards stage one of the Beerburrum to Nambour Rail Upgrade, and $25 million towards the Sunshine Motorway, Mooloolah River Interchange upgrade.

Both of those projects are being delivered over several years, in partnership with the Federal Government.

Local infrastructure projects also partly funded in the 2022/2023 State Budget, include $10 million for Six Mile Creek bridge replacement at Kin Kin, $180 million to upgrade the Bruce Highway to four lanes from Cooroy to Curra, and $22.8 million for the Bells Creek Arterial Road in Caloundra to connect the Aura community to the Bruce Highway at Roys Road.

Despite those announcements, LNP member and Kawana MP Jarrod Bleijie says the Sunshine Coast has missed out.

He says he's disappointed plans to extend the heavy rail from Beerwah to Maroochydore have been left off the list.

"It does not deliver for the Sunshine Coast. I was hopeful that we'd have our heavy passenger rail over the CAMCOS Corridor finally delivered, but not a cent for it, so that's really disappointing actually."

"The former Morrison Government has contributed hundreds of millions of dollar in their budget... and now it was the State Government's chance to chip in 50 per cent funding and they've not done it."

However Calounda MP and Labor member Jason Hunt says the LNP needs to take a closer look at the budget papers, confirming some cash has been put aside to investigate the major rail project. 

"We can't just roll out a project of that size without planning and a study, so there's money in the budget for exactly that.

"There's $3 million in the budget, $6 million in total, to do the study, so that you can roll it out effectively."