'Great announcement': GPC and MP back Port Access funding
GLADSTONE Ports Corporation and state local MP Glenn Butcher are both supporting the next stage of Port Access Rd after the $100 million promise in tonight's Federal Budget.
Gladstone stands to benefit regardless of the result in the upcoming federal election, with both the Federal Government and Labor promising identical amounts.
GPC acting chief executive Craig Walker said the corporation would continue to support the investigation of options to extend the road.
"GPC has been working collaboratively with Gladstone Regional Council, the State Government and other key stakeholders around concept and design for the project," he said.
Mr Walker said an extended Port Access Rd would have flow-on benefits for the community.
"Stage two will improve safety for local road users by separating heavy vehicle traffic from the local road network and provide an efficient truck haulage route into and out of the port area," he said.
"The road will allow safe access for heavy vehicle connections to the State Development Area via the Dawson Highway and north to the Bruce Highway.
"Stage two is anticipated to be a little over 2.5km in length, providing an alternative route for traffic from Port Central to beyond the Gladstone inner urban area.
"It's proposed stage two would run to the west of the North Coal rail line between Glenlyon St in the north and Blain Drive in the south."
The $100 million in federal funds would equate to about 80 per cent of the funding, with the State Government expected to foot the other 20 per cent.
Mr Walker said funding arrangements would be discussed further in the project development phase.
Mr Butcher said the news was a "great announcement" but work still needed to be done at a state level.
"The Port Access Rd is obviously a priority for the state as well," the MP said.
"This is still the early days of an election campaign and (the costs) will have to be looked at by the Transport and Main Roads Minister and Treasury."