South Australian businesses are a step closer to better freight connections with the contract awarded to design and deliver a $14 million upgrade to the Adelaide Hills freight route to Lobethal.

The contract has been awarded to McConnell Dowell Construction Pty Ltd.

Minister for Urban Infrastructure and Cities Paul Fletcher said the Australian Government was investing in improving the safety and efficiency of Adelaide’s arterial road network and reducing congestion.

“The Lobethal Freight Access Upgrade is an investment in South Australian business and jobs as it will provide more reliable freight connections to existing export/import gateways like Port Adelaide and to the state and national highway network,” Mr Fletcher said.

“The Lobethal upgrade will improve productivity and reduce ‘last mile’ access issues, especially in regional areas. The Australian Government is working closely with industry to improve freight productivity, including through upgrades like this, as well as initiatives such as the National Freight and Supply Chain Strategy.”

Federal Member for Barker Tony Basin said improvements to be delivered under the upgrade included bridge and culvert widening and strengthening, pavement widening and intersection upgrades.

“This project will upgrade a 34-kilometre route to provide heavy vehicle access from the existing Adelaide Hills freight route at Palmer, through Tungkillo and Mount Torrens to the Thomas Foods International facility in Lobethal,” Mr Pasin said.

“In providing heavy freight trucks, including B-doubles, with a safer, more efficient link between Palmer and Lobethal, this project is crucial to improving the export competitiveness of South Australian industry.”

The $14 million project is fully funded by the Australian Government.