Central Australia is getting merely crumbs off the table in “a significant investment in bush roads across the Territory” by the Federal and NT Governments.
Malarndirri McCarthy, NT Minister for Regional Development, and Warren Snowdon, Member for Lingiari, announced today they would be committing $16m and $90m, respectively, to a “new Regional Roads Productivity Package” to “encourage growth and development in a number of communities and local industries”.
The slice of that for Central Australia will be for “upgrading the gravel condition of priority sections” – no lengths or costs disclosed – of the Santa Teresa Way whose total length is about 70 kms.
All other “identified projects” are in the Top End:
• Roper Highway, causeways and associated works, targeted strengthening and widening;
• Port Keats Road, targeted sealing and flood immunity improvements;
• Central Arnhem Road, construction of a new bridge over Rocky Bottom Creek;
• Buntine Highway, targeted strengthening, widening and sealing works; and
• Arnhem Link Road, upgrading the gravel condition of priority sections;
The Northern Territory Government will fully scope the projects to determine which sections of these roads to prioritise and what work needs to be done, the media release says.
“These regional roads are major arteries connecting and providing access to communities, supporting tourism, the cattle and resources sector as well as improving the economic opportunities for Territorians living in remote areas,” Ms McCarthy is quoted.
“Along with our investment into our Territory Growth Towns this is about growing our regional economies and creating more jobs in the bush.”
Mr Snowdon is quoted as saying: “The investment in regional roads is a win not only for unlocking economic opportunities but also for improving access to essential services.
“This new funding is in addition to the unprecedented $635.6 million the Federal Labor Government is providing under the current six-year Nation Building Program (2008-09 to 2013-14) to rebuild and renew the Territory’s road infrastructure.”