More than $3 million will be spent upgrading a northern suburbs blackspot in preparation for works on the joint Australian and South Australian Governments’ Northern Connector Project.
This is the first instalment of the $985 million Northern Connector which will improve travel times, boost freight efficiency and support hundreds of local jobs.
Transport Minister Stephen Mullighan said together with continuing projects, such as the Royal Adelaide Hospital and the North-South Corridor, Torrens Road to River Torrens Project, more than $6 billion of major infrastructure projects are underway or about to start supporting thousands of South Australian jobs.
The early works, awarded to BMD Group, involve the installation of a roundabout at the intersection of the realigned Kings and Bolivar Roads in Paralowie.
“The Kings/Bolivar intersection is close to the proposed Bolivar Road interchange and will be an important feeder route for the Northern Connector once the six-lane motorway is complete,” Mr Mullighan said.
“About 28,000 vehicles use Kings and Bolivar roads every day and that is expected to increase when the Australian and South Australian governments deliver the Northern Connector.”
The head of the Northern Connector Jobs Taskforce Lee Odenwalder said the $3.4 million upgrade would play an important role in developing on-site training programs for disadvantaged job seekers.
“The Northern Connector major works will utilise these programs to further provide opportunities for workers looking to transition from the automotive industry, as well as providing jobs for the disadvantaged and long-term unemployed,” Mr Odenwalder said.
“A training site will be set up with an on-site meeting room turned into a classroom for students studying construction and infrastructure courses.
“They will receive assistance to win job opportunities on the Northern Connector Project and other local council works.”
Already dozens of Aboriginal workers are being employed on projects associated with the Northern Connector Project, through companies such as ART Services.
“ART Services will conduct traffic management for the Kings/Bolivar roadworks, and played a similar role in the early works project to upgrade the Sturt/Marion intersection ahead of the Darlington Upgrade Project,” Mr Mullighan said.
ART Services Managing Director Allan Jones said the projects were providing real opportunities for Aboriginal workers to gain training leading to long-term employment.
“These North-South Corridor projects are providing a steady stream of training and employment opportunities for our staff,” Mr Jones said.
“About 25 Aboriginal employees worked on the Darlington early works package and this new project will employ a further 10.
“In more good news for Aboriginal workers, we have recently learnt that ART Services will assist with traffic management on the water mains relocation works for the Darlington Upgrade Project, commencing this week.”
The successful tenderer for the Northern Connector project is expected to be announced in May 2016, with works scheduled to commence soon after.
More information on these projects can be found at the Northern Connector website and Darlington Upgrade websites.
The Northern Connector project is part of the Northern Economic Plan, which has been developed by the State Government in partnership with the Playford, Salisbury, and Port Adelaide Enfield Councils, along with industries, businesses, and the community.
The Northern Economic Plan is a blueprint for a prosperous northern Adelaide, focused on creating jobs and empowering local communities.
Source: News Release, Government of South Australia, 22 March 2016