Objective 2Industry engagement
- Queensland Ministerial Freight Council
- Agricultural Vehicle Notice
- Working with local government through the Roads and Transport Alliance
- Transport and Infrastructure Council
- Research Partnerships – Australian Road and Research Board (ARRB)
- Transport Academic Partnership
- How Queenslanders travel
Queensland Ministerial Freight Council
The Queensland Ministerial Freight Council is an advisory body, established under Ministerial direction, to facilitate communication and consultation between freight industry peak bodies representing stakeholders in Queensland's significant economic supply chains and TMR. The council is a single multi-modal and multi-sectorial group which focusses on the growing demands of the freight task and works towards gaining efficiencies through strategic and holistic approaches to managing the movement of freight which supports economic prosperity and jobs growth in a sustainable manner.
The council has met twice in the last 12 months. The council has received industry and government updates about the Ex-Tropical Cyclone Debbie recovery, federal government budget announcements for Queensland, Transport and Infrastructure Senior Officials' Committee, and Transport and Infrastructure Council. The key outcome for the Queensland Ministerial Freight Council was overseeing the development of the draft Queensland Freight Strategy in 2017.
Agricultural Vehicle Notice
We have been working with Queensland's agricultural sector on a number of key initiatives to improve safety and efficiency of road access for oversized agricultural equipment.
These activities included:
- sending a specialist taskforce to Mackay to assist the cane industry to manage the late harvest by providing access over the Christmas oversize load road restriction curfew period. This action facilitated the harvest and delivery of an additional 100,000 tonnes to sugar mills
- developing a National Notice to increase the width limit from 3.5 metres to 5 metres wide for agricultural vehicles on lower trafficked roads north of Rockhampton
- a National Notice allowing cotton harvesters and other agricultural equipment associated with cotton harvesting to travel during the restricted Easter period for the next five years
- the development of a simplified traffic management plan template for the agricultural industry to use when applying for permits, reducing the administrative burden
- working closely with the NHVR and the agricultural industry bodies to develop a national harmonised Agricultural Notice.
The department is aware of issues the agricultural sector faces with accessing the road network. We have consulted extensively with peak bodies and operators to not only improve the level of access, but also to simplify the process of applying for access. The challenge is to balance economic efficiency with the safety of other road users.
Working with local government through the Roads and Transport Alliance
In a partnership spanning over 15 years, we continue to work closely with the LGAQ (see glossary) on behalf of local government in the Roads and Transport Alliance (see glossary). This long-standing partnership targets investment in local government transport infrastructure.
Under the alliance, local governments voluntarily collaborate with our district staff to make local transport infrastructure investment decisions based on regional priorities.
The 17 Regional Roads and Transport Groups work to prioritise a two-year fixed and two-year indicative work program funded by the Transport Infrastructure Development Scheme (TIDS) (see glossary page 233).
This year, TIDS funding subsidised 256 transport infrastructure projects, such as:
- installed culverts at Age of Dinosaur Road, Winton
- installed a supervised crossing at Upper Mount Gravatt State School
- applied asphalt treatment overlay to Red Rover Road, Gladstone.
The alliance promotes increased collaboration between the department and local governments, with a focus on building capacity and capability in each region.
Transport and Infrastructure Council
Members of the Transport and Infrastructure Council met in Perth in November 2016 and in Brisbane in May 2017. The council delivers national reforms to improve the efficiency and productivity of Australia's infrastructure and transport systems, and ensures these systems drive economic growth, increase employment opportunities, support social connectivity, and enhance quality of life for Australians.
Participating in national agenda setting enables Queensland to progress its interests in areas such as land transport market reform, heavy vehicle reform, road safety, freight efficiency, maritime and rail safety, and innovation and technology.
The council is supported by the Transport and Infrastructure and Senior Officials' Committee (TISOC) which also met twice during the year. TISOC provides advice and assistance to the council via TMR's Director-General. Our participation in the Council and TISOC help us to ensure TMR's vision, to create a single integrated transport network accessible to everyone, is on the national agenda.
Research Partnerships – Australian Road and Research Board (ARRB)
In December 2016 the department re-signed the Memorandum of Understanding with the ARRB (see glossary). Through this agreement, the department has committed ongoing support for the delivery of the National Asset Centre of Excellence (NACoE), a research and development body led by the department and ARRB.
NACoE undertakes a rolling three year program of research and innovation development projects aiming to assist the department to stay at the forefront of international best practice while driving sustainable and cost effective outcomes.
The following achievements have been delivered through the 2016–17 program:
We are leading the drive to introduce high modulus asphalt to Australia for major cost savings. High modulus asphalt, or EME2, offers a reduction in asphalt base thicknesses of at least 20 per cent, representing a huge potential saving on asphalt spend and construction time. We are the first road agency in Australia to publish both a pavement design methodology and a technical specification for this asphalt. In 2016, we successfully conducted the first trial of EME2 in Australia, and in March this year more than 10,000 tonnes was successfully placed on the Deagon Deviation – the largest use in Australia.
Crumb rubber (from waste tyres)
The success of the research and subsequent trials is indicating the use of Crumb Rubber Modifier (CRM) will deliver:
- Reduced waste – increased use of CRM binder provides a potential long-term alternative to this wastage
- Cost savings – sprayed seals that contain CRM binder are no more expensive than sprayed seals that contain an equivalent polymer modified binder
- Better performing pavements – asphalt and sprayed seals that contain CRM binder may last longer and perform better than those using conventional bituminous binders, lengthening the life of pavements through improved binder durability and waterproofing.
Use of crumb rubber on TMR projects has increased significantly since the commencement of the research project. Across the last two years, approximately 200,000 tyres were incorporated into road surfacings constructed as part of our road resurfacing program.
Improved line marking
Improved line marking project involving a trial of different line marking treatment to assess performance through reflectivity and longevity. The learnings from the project will be implemented through the department's statewide line marking program with the aim to deliver improved value for money.
Transport Academic Partnership
The Transport Academic Partnership is an agreement between our department, the Motor Accident Insurance Commission, Griffith University, Queensland University of Technology and the University of Queensland.
The partnership enables university partners to undertake innovative research and development to advance strategic transport capability and knowledge transfer between government, industry and the academic sectors, to help address future transport challenges. Research and development partnership outcomes are expected to help inform departmental policy and investment decisions.
Some research project examples include:
- developing a real time incident prediction tool to improve network management and incident response on the transport system
- modelling the timing and spatial patterns of property value uplift from recent investments in rail, busways and ferries.
Collaborating with universities enables departmental staff to enhance their skills and knowledge about emerging trends and expose them to best practice and international research.
The partnership will help to create employment opportunities for university transport researchers and assist in developing 'job ready' students for the transport sector.
How Queenslanders travel
Results from previous travel surveys conducted by the department indicate travel patterns are becoming increasingly complex, with mobility rapidly evolving in line with changing household structures. These shifts, along with advances in technology, are disrupting traditional approaches for collecting personal travel data.
As such, for the latest Queensland Travel Survey (QTS), a new approach to data collection has been developed and a web-first methodology introduced, the first of its kind in Australia.
The use of an online platform and innovative web-first approach will improve the respondent experience, collect better quality data, reduce the cost per household to conduct the survey, and deliver data sooner.
By mid-2018, using the new approach, we plan to survey 10,000 households across south east Queensland, providing valuable information to inform our transport investment decisions.
Using travel survey data
The QTS in different forms, has been conducted by the department since 1976. From 2009 more than 71,000 people have been surveyed across the breadth of Queensland, providing an invaluable snapshot of the travel decisions Queenslanders make every day. The data provides insights into what these decisions mean for transport planning in our towns and regions and helps to develop our economy, strengthen the validity of decisions and even lead to valuable research.
For example, TMR takes data from the 'How Queensland Travels' survey and combines it with other large surveys such as the Australian Bureau of Statistics' Census of Population and Housing to help pinpoint in what ways Queensland centres are growing and changing. The combined sets of information are then used to develop strategic travel demand models. These models produce forecasts which can show how, when and why trips are made on the network and how this might change over time.
By understanding these demands, TMR can extrapolate what kind and how much additional transport infrastructure and services might be needed as Queensland's population changes. TMR has developed travel demand models for all the major towns and cities across Queensland from Cairns in the north to the Gold Coast in the south. The current practice is that these models, among other things, will inform the development of policies, strategies and business cases to guide investment decisions.