SkyscraperCity banner
1 - 1 of 1 Posts

21 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
By Anne Davies State Political Editor
May 30, 2006

AdvertisementTHE Iemma Government will increase the state's debt and seek more public-private partnerships to fund transport projects and new schools, hospitals and police stations, in its 10-year infrastructure plan to be released today.

The plan - designed to dovetail into the state's 30-year metropolitan strategy - aims to convince a sceptical public that the Government is committed to meeting the state's infrastructure needs.

The document is unlikely to include any big new projects, but for the first time it will try to articulate when and how the Government plans to pay for future infrastructure.

It is expected to provide at least four years of forward estimates, giving a longer-term picture of spending on infrastructure.

Most of the funding will come from an increase in the state's net debt. Currently at $8.7 billion, it is expected to rise to more than $10 billion in coming years.

There will also be significant reliance on private funding, where it is deemed to work, such as in building new schools.

The big-ticket items will be in rail. The Government has foreshadowed building three new rail lines to the new-release areas in north-west Sydney by 2017, to south-west Sydney by 2012 and a longer-term project to build a second harbour rail crossing to provide additional capacity.

The Government announced last week that it had allowed $130 million for land acquisition in this budget - to be funded initially by debt but later through levies on new lots.

In 2005-06 the Government spent $8.2 billion on capital works. This amount is likely to increase substantially over coming years because of the big rail projects and the continuing cost of the rail clearways program, which involves untangling the city's rail network to create separate lines and avoid a breakdown affecting the entire system.

The document is also expected to map out a strategy for handling the expected increase in freight into an expanded Port Botany. There are likely to be several projects outlined, such as additional freight lines that will be federally funded and intermodal freight depots on the fringes of Sydney.

There could also be a commitment to the Botany freight tunnel, which would connect Port Botany to the M4. This is likely to be a public-private partnership.

The document will also cover other key areas of infrastructure such as power and water.

It will again spell out the Government's strategy for securing the water supply and how this will be paid for.

The new sewerage and recycling plants for south-western Sydney will be public-private partnerships, as will the planned recycling plant at Camellia.

On power, the Government is expected to reiterate its plans for up to five gas turbine peaking plants, to be built by the private sector.
1 - 1 of 1 Posts