Strong Growth Ahead

Regional Development SA has identified these infrastructure projects, along with 64 others across the state, as the most important developments to support the $65.99 billion regional investment pipeline.

Strong growth ahead for the Adelaide Hills, Fleurieu and KI

The Mount Barker City Centre Project, Hahndorf Freeway Interchange Adelaide Road, and the Mount Barker
Wastewater Reuse infrastructure Project have been named as the highest-priority projects for the Adelaide
Hills, Fleurieu Peninsula and Kangaroo Island, in the 2023 Regional Development SA Infrastructure
Prioritisation Plan.

Regional Development SA (RDSA) has identified these three regional infrastructure projects, along with 64 others across the state, as the most important developments that support the $65.99 billion regional investment pipeline RDAs track and consolidate for State Government, and has the potential to create 21,702 construction jobs.

The RDSA Infrastructure Prioritisation report is a five-yearly plan which summarises priority projects, their likely impacts on the state and what resources are required to deliver these projects successfully. This allows a focus on broader state needs and promotes transparent decision making.

The latest report, which was finalised in late December, focuses on projects which support greater regional housing development, addresses the “childcare desert” and much-needed jetty upgrades impacting several regions, along with many others.

RDA AHFKI Chair, Mr James Sexton, said there were 10 local projects in the report, ranging from the Northern Freight Bypass to the upgrade to the Old Victor Harbor SteamRanger Line, the Fleurieu Freight Route Bypass, the Hahndorf Main Street Upgrade.

“Our region has strong population growth, a bustling visitor economy and highly-competitive export industries ranging from agriculture to mining.

These projects will support the development of infrastructure to lower commercial barriers and increase the productivity of supply chains and access to markets.

Not only that, if we can encourage growth by improving how we live and work, we’ll create more vibrant and liveable communities.”

James Sexton, Chair of Regional Development Australia Adelaide Hills, Fleurieu & Kangaroo Island

RDSA Chair, Hon Rob Kerin, said the report’s priorities aligned with the South Australian Government’s A Better Housing Future plan and the Australian Government’s Housing Accord.

“Our regions drive our state’s economy, particularly when it comes to agricultural production, resources, construction and health care. By prioritising and advocating for projects, we can promote the state’s growth, which will benefit every South Australian.”

Rob Kerin, Chair of Regional Development South Australia

“If supported by targeted investment and a robust pipeline of required skills and resources, the state can continue to develop a smart, sustainable and inclusive economy which is competitive on a national and global scale,” he added.

The RDSA’s state-wide underlined the importance of developing more affordable housing for growth in communities through high-priority infrastructure projects such as highway and freight route upgrades, water projects, telecommunications upgrades, energy developments, irrigation and community master planning.

Many communities where work is available are unable to accommodate workers moving to their city or town.

“By recommending the improvement to regional infrastructure, we’re hoping it will pave the way for significant regional growth, which not only builds community strength, but builds capacity, improves the social fabric of surrounding areas and re-attracts young people and families back home

Rob Kerin

The report also highlighted projects interconnected across regions, such as the Northern Water and the Northern Irrigation projects, freight connectivity, and tourism projects including extensive wine trails and transport routes.

There was also a need for a greater focus on circular economies to reduce waste, energy production, pollution and recycling as a as growth opportunities for many regional communities, potentially supporting the creation of an additional 25,700 new jobs and reducing the state’s carbon emissions by 27 per cent.

RDSA is a member-based, not-for-profit organisation that supports economic development across seven regions and metropolitan Adelaide, with each funded by the three tiers of federal, state and local government.