Moreton Bay Puts Politics Aside to Drive Generational Agenda

Published 07 May 2021

Leaders' Forum

For the first time in Moreton Bay Region’s history, elected members at every level of government have come together and put party politics aside to address the big issues head-on.

It could see mega millions streaming into the region on the road to COVID recovery - with Moreton Bay Regional Council, the Palaszczuk Government and the Morrison Government all agreeing to advancing the region’s interests, as it prepares for unprecedented population growth over the next 20-30 years.

That will involve fast-tracking the $68.5 million Youngs Crossing Road upgrade, establishing a $125 million Knowledge and Innovation Centre at The Mill, supporting new road projects to alleviate congestion including on the Bruce Highway, and backing the Dolphin’s NRL Licence Bid for Moreton Bay Region.

Mayor Peter Flannery said it’s the kind of political cooperation the community expects all the time but needs now more than ever.

“Today was about acting local, dreaming big and working together,” Mayor Flannery said.

“Today we discussed next steps and proposed ways forward on regional priority projects that have been stuck in the pipeline due to a lack of funding support.

“I don’t think there’s a region anywhere else in Australia where you’d see the level of political cooperation we’re enjoying here.

“Thanks to the State and Federal Governments we’ve invested over $90 million in community building projects since COVID hit, well beyond the $42 million Council could afford alone.

“We’re working smarter, we’re cutting red tape, and we’re investing in the projects that our communities have been calling out for.”

Minister for Defence and Federal Member for Dickson Peter Dutton said today was an historic day for the region’s future.

“Today we made a breakthrough on the upgrade of Youngs Crossing Road with the Federal Government committing $32.75 million towards constructing a new route,” Minister Dutton said.

“This will be one of the largest road projects Council will ever deliver, it will enhance community safety, deliver flood immunity, ease congestion and support future growth and development in the region.”

“I am pleased that the Morrison Government is able to invest a further $25 million on top of what we had previously announced to enable Council to deliver this project.”

Queensland Deputy Premier and Member for Murrumba Steven Miles said today’s outcomes focused on future proofing the region.

“We might disagree sometimes, but I know we all love the region and want to see it develop,” the Deputy Premier said.

“The Queensland Government is investing $350,000 to progress planning for an intersection upgrade at Youngs Crossing Road and Dayboro Road.

“I will also work to secure a $10 million contribution to the upgrade, subject to a business case and successful partnership to deliver Youngs Crossing."

All leaders remain committed to progressing the region’s key arterial road networks, integrated upgrades to the Bruce Highway and Gateway Motorway, including the Moreton Connector.

Minister Dutton said infrastructure was just one part of the story, adding that governments also needed to invest in people.

“Together, we also acknowledged that a $125 million Knowledge and Innovation Centre was critical to the region's long-term education, jobs, innovation and investment,” Minister Dutton said.

“It’s a project that all levels of government will back through the South East Queensland City Deal that will support education pathways for locals and catapult the region’s status as a technology and innovation hub.”

There was also a unified cry to put Moreton Bay Region on the national stage, with every single regional leader signing a letter of support backing the Dolphins’ NRL licence bid.

The Deputy Premier, a long-time Rugby League fan said having a local team in the NRL would be a game-changer for the region.

“While infrastructure and innovation were a big focus today, it was great to see everyone get behind a local NRL bid by signing a letter of support to the Australian Rugby League Commission,” Mr Miles said.

“Having our own NRL team wouldn’t just be a great branding exercise for our region, it would bring an enormous economic uplift and be a great way to rally locals and cement a sense of community in the region.

“It’s also important as we work to put Moreton Bay Region on the map as a world-class sporting destination ahead of the 2032 Olympic bid.”

Mr Miles also reiterated the joint support for a Knowledge and Innovation Centre at the Mill site at Petrie.

“A Knowledge and Innovation Centre would help create new industries and education opportunities for generations to come,” Mr Miles said.

Mayor Peter Flannery said amid all the difficulties associated with coronavirus, this newfound unity and momentum was a truly positive outcome.

“It’s great to have such a close working relationship with the State and Federal Government, a real partnership, to already be kicking goals for Moreton Bay Region,” Mayor Flannery said.

“I want this to become a biennial summit, to keep our eyes focussed on tomorrow and the decades ahead so that Moreton Bay Region is the best place to live in all of South East Queensland.”