Road upgrades along three key freight routes in SA are progressing, with initial works beginning on the Stuart Highway, near the NT border, and along the Dukes Highway.
Over 3200 heavy vehicles use the Stuart, Augusta, and Dukes highways each day – and about half of them are B-doubles and road trains.
The aim of the upgrades is to enhance safety and reliability along these routes; and to improve freight productivity by reducing travel times for heavy vehicle operators.
“The pandemic has taken its toll on Australia’s supply chain over the last three years, making it vital we invest in measures to keep our freight drivers moving, with safety always the top priority,” said Federal Infrastructure, Transport, Regional Development and Local Government Minister Catherine King.
“These upgrades will also deliver reduced travel times for our truckies, ensuring a more efficient, smoother journey from the farmgate to wholesalers, retailers and on to consumers.”
Works have also begun along Port Wakefield Highway between Adelaide and Port Wakefield and on Augusta Highway around Port Augusta.
The series of upgrades are part of a $30 million spend occurring this financial year.
Other works are currently being considered including intersection upgrades, overtaking lanes, rest areas and safety treatments. In total, $500 million has been committed towards the upgrades, with the Australian Government committing $400 million and the South Australian Government committing $100 million.
The Australian Government’s contribution is part of the $1.5 billion National Freight Highway Upgrade Program – a 2022-23 October Budget commitment to seal the Tanami Track in Northern Territory and Western Australia, as well as upgrading other nationally significant freight routes, including the Dukes, Stuart and Augusta highways, and Central Arnhem Road in the Northern Territory.