BRIDGES AND HEAVY VEHICLE SAFETY FUNDING FLOWS TO GYMPIE

Gympie road users will enjoy safer conditions with more than $1.5 million to upgrade Rammutt Road at Chatsworth and replace Tandur Road Bridge at Kybong, Federal Member for Wide Bay and Deputy Speaker of the House of Representatives Llew O’Brien announced today.
 
The two projects will receive a share of more than $290 million in Australian Government funding under Round 5 of the Bridges Renewal Program (BRP) and Round 7 of the Heavy Vehicle Safety and Productivity Program (HVSPP).
 
Mr O’Brien said $1,137,500 in Bridges Renewal Program funding would be invested in replacing the existing single-lane Tandur Road Bridge with a new concrete bridge, and $486,314 would be invested through the Heavy Vehicle Safety and Productivity Program to widen and strengthen Rammutt Road.
 
“These two important infrastructure works will deliver a safer bridge at Kybong and a safer road here at Chatsworth, and as well as improving road safety, this investment will generate jobs in the local community,” Mr O’Brien said.
 
“It’s a win-win for road safety and for jobs, and it couldn’t have come at a better time as we work to rebuild the local economy in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic, the prolonged drought and last summer’s bushfires.”
 
Mr O’Brien said the funding would allow Gympie Regional Council to fast-track their highest-priority infrastructure projects and would support local workers, households and businesses through a difficult time, positioning Gympie’s economy for a strong recovery.
 
“There will be long-term economic benefits as well by ensuring improved access for local traffic, freight and tourism to keep Gympie and its hinterland areas open to all road users,” Mr O’Brien said.
 
Round 5 of the Liberal and National Government’s Bridges Renewal Program is delivering more than $145 million to upgrade and replace 205 bridges which have been damaged or are deteriorating, and improve transport infrastructure including almost $5 million to replace four bridges at Noosa.
 
“By improving our road network this funding will also make key freight routes more efficient, delivering long-term benefits to drivers, businesses and local communities, including our truckies, who form an essential part of the backbone of our national economy and have been working tirelessly during COVID-19 to keep shelves stocked, hospitals supplied and the economy moving,” Mr O’Brien said.
 
“As we start to recover from the COVID-19 pandemic’s impact on our economy, the continued roll-out of road infrastructure projects is important to support local jobs, drive economic growth and ensure all Australians can reach their destinations sooner and safer, and that is what the Morrison Government is doing with this funding in the 20-21 Budget.”
 
The federal funding will be matched and the projects will be managed by Gympie Regional Council.
 
Gympie Regional Council Mayor Glen Hartwig welcomed the Federal Government funding for the Tandur Road Bridge and Rammutt Road upgrade.
 
“These projects are a priority for the Gympie Council and the community, and it’s perfect to keep the local economy moving,” Cr Hartwig said.
 
“As well as creating jobs in construction, these works will stimulate the economy and improve the liveability for local people.
 
“Most importantly, these upgrades to the road network will improve the flow of traffic and freight, which helps attract future investment in Gympie and will be critical to the future growth of our region.”
 
Assistant Minister for Road Safety and Freight Transport Scott Buchholz said 50 per cent of this funding would benefit communities impacted by the ongoing drought and earlier bushfire events.
 
“$146.97 million in funding through these rounds will go to councils affected by bushfires, drought or both – providing secure work for local construction contractors and businesses who have felt the cumulative impact of these events and now COVID-19 while delivering lasting infrastructure that will benefit the region for years to come,” Mr Buchholz said.
 
“This includes livestock transport industry projects that will directly support communities currently impacted by drought, being funded under Round 7 of the HVSPP.
 
“Round 5 of the BRP also provides an opportunity for many councils to begin the process of replacing or upgrading bridges damaged in bushfire events, both rounds demonstrating our steadfast commitment to continue to stand side by side with these communities doing it particularly tough.
 
“Already more than 500 projects funded through the BRP and HVSPP across the country have either been completed or are well underway and I look forward to getting shovels in the ground on these next projects.” 
 
For more information and a list of successful applicants, visit: 
www.infrastructure.gov.au/bridges
www.infrastructure.gov.au/hvspp