Hamilton Plains plan now under way
WITH a Queensland state election looming, positive signs are beginning to emerge in respect to keeping Hamilton Plains above water.
Acting Minister for Main Roads and Road Safety Steven Miles said the Department of Main Roads and Transport had started planning to improve flood immunity in Proserpine Shute Harbour Rd and Hamilton Plains.
"The Department of Main Roads and Transport recently completed flood modelling which will assist with a business case to be completed by the end of this year,” Dr Miles said.
"We're delivering a record spend on road and transport infrastructure for the second year in a row through the Queensland Transport and Roads Investment Program 2017-18 to 2020-21, which outlines close to $21 billion of investment over the next four years across the state.
"For the Mackay Whitsundays region, we are delivering $210 million in 2017-18 and $1.13 billion over the next four years.”
Whitsunday MP Jason Costigan last week criticised the Queensland Government's commitment to the stretch of road and said it "didn't get one red cent” in the 2017-18 budget.
Dr Miles, in response to the criticism, fired back: "If the member for Whitsunday was so concerned about upgrading this road, why did he not get the job done when the LNP was in government with a record majority?”
Labor candidate for Whitsunday Bronwyn Taha welcomed the work towards a business case and said flood-proofing the road was a matter which came down to community expectations.
"I think the people here in our community expect something to be done on this important crucial artery that connects our hospital and airport to the Whitsundays,” she said.
"This is a flood plain and we have a lot of tidal creeks involved, so it will take a lot of work to get it right, but I think we are on the right track of looking at this finally and getting something done.
"I'll work hard to make sure that this road that connects the world to the Whitsundays isn't forgotten.”
Mr Costigan said the Palaszczuk Labor Government was just taking the community "for a ride”.
"We don't need a bloody business case to work out we have a road that is subject to flooding , a road that cuts Airlie and Proserpine in half,” he said.
"This project is a no brainer and everyone knows it.”