It is good to see the current Government is committed …

Comment on Mereenie Loop Road on the never-never by Spot.

It is good to see the current Government is committed to enhancing visitor experiences in the Mereenie area.
Perhaps they could find the 7 million dollars that was stripped from this area not long after the previous ALP government was voted in.
With this more works could be done in what has become an important access highway not only for the tourist industry but for the many local communities and the gas and oil industries that are developing at a rapid rate.
The previous CLP Government had the foresight and it looks like this one may have it as well, to realise the potential benefits of having this road sealed not only for today’s benefits
But the future as well.
In reply to the outback experience of driving this road you only have to ask the many of our visitors that have come to grief on this road, if they enjoyed the drive.
Yes, the scenery but not the road is a common reply.
I must say, if all the tourist drivers that cost their bosses tens of thousands of dollars in repairs to buses by using this road, if you need to drive on dirt roads to get a high light of the tour you really need to get another job.
As it has been mentioned, it is a great area for interest in plants, animals, local history and culture, all of this can be done on a sealed road. If keeping it dirt is a valid argument to getting more visitors why did they seal the Stuart Highway and the Lasseter Highway?
In regards to the Giles road, it is a short cut, used for just that. It does have several small communities along it so it should be graded.
But that’s it, with the country it runs through it would much likely cost as much as the loop road as the interesting colour of this road between the Stuart Highway and the Palmer river unfortunately is not cement, we call this clay, yes clay, if you stop and spit on it you may not get traction to leave.
Unlike the Mereenie loop road it doesn’t have all the Western communities using it for main access north / south and the massive road trains travelling on it at an ever increasing rate serving what could be Central Australia’s largest developing industry.
It would be good to ask the local communities and resorts in the area if they would like it sealed.
If the locals would like it to be done then it should be, as this is where the only poor people in Australia that drive cars are hiding, as they are always the ones left behind with the bad roads the high cost of transport, accessibility to homes and services in town.
These decisions should not be made on the opinions of those that leave in a few years and forget about the great dirt driving experiences back on the city express ways.

Recent Comments by Spot

Temporary Beat Locations – stop the political games
Since the commencement of all the TBLs around Alice Springs the environments around the liquor outlets have seen great improvements, helping keep the shopping centres family friendly locations.
The moment the police are not to be seen they turn back into humbugging, swearing fighting drunken car parks.
I am sure we are all aware this would be the one of the most least rewarding post to be sent to but the presence is appreciated by many of the shoppers.
So next time you go shopping go past the officers and thank them for doing such a boring but necessary job.
We can all see what the police are doing but can we get a response from the People’s Alcohol Action Coalition in regards to the issue of powdered alcohol that seems to have been overshadowed by the Vegemite scandal.
New York has banned it, SA has made a preemptive move, VIC is looking for support of other states and territories – what is the NT doing about it?
Is it not that prevention is better than years of cures and future failed policies?

Do we really need to seal that other loop?
Really, are we still having this discussion? The sealing of the Mereenie loop should not be put back again. Is everyone still only looking as far as their one tank of fuel takes them and what only effects them?
Surely people have been reading about the upgrade of the great central highway and the Outback Way. All the traffic will be travelling along this route for some time to come.
This traffic comming from the west would go around the Mereenie to Alice Springs via the West Macs.
Traffic also travelling from south would continue around as well, instead of going in and out of Watarrka, then into Alice, possibly not haveing any more time to go out to the West Macs before continuing north.
With good statistics being collected this may even be able to be confirmed from the tourist industry already or from traffic counters on all these road.
We still need to consider the other industries using this route as well, why should all the locals have to put up with bad roads so a few weekend four wheel drivers can go out and roll the new four wheel drives.
So we should be looking at this as a way to direct travellers into Alice Springs and not the other way around as everyone seems to think you don’t see pictures of Alice Springs all around the world but you do see the big red rock everywhere, so maybe this needs to be considered a bit more.
Wasn’t Yulara a town once but is was such a badly mismanaged one it was decided to turn it in to a resort to rectify this.
Food for thought.

Ice – it’s worse than any of us realise
As this is being fueled by the alarming high prices it fetches here in Australia, this will only get worse before we can relax on trying to stop the illegal labs that are being set up in the houses next door in suburban town areas.
With this it is an example of why the legal drug companies are also targeting Australia.
While we are all in a state of shock at the illegal trade, not only in the cities but also remote communities, we are being distracted by the quiet attempt to bring in the legal use of powdered alcohol into our already over burdened systems.
How great would that be for the transport into remote areas – just add water!
Only if you want to.
Let the Territory lead the way ban it, keep this off our shores. Don’t we already have enough to deal with illegal drugs to have to deal with more legal ones as well.


Inspiration from the roads of a big country
Great article Erwin.
Goes to show a great journey of discovery can bring some great ideas back to Alice Springs and the NT.
It is to see the rest of Australia and some small islands near us that have the edge on the NT in ways of making their locations more interesting and exciting to visit. It seems we have become boring.
Some excitement, fresh paint smiling faces on the people that greet our visitors and perhaps a web cam on the towers on the hill would also be a great start so people all over the world can see what great scenery there is.
Would be great to see it on SBS next to Prague, Paris and other locations around the world also for all the expats of Alice to check on the weather when they get homesick.
Maybe only a 180 degree picture, need to cut out the duck ponds and dump of course.
Keep the ideas coming – perhaps some day some will be developed.
And, come on, all must see the humour in marketing.
Do the NT is great, brings back a lot of great memories for many for there ain’t many places they haven’t done it.
So love your one even better. Be my mate for a month.
And we can Do the NT together perhaps!
Great to have you back from holidays.
Cheers, Spot.

TIO sale must be stopped: Opposition
It will show how loyal Territorials are to their TIO when the sale proceeds.
I will be one that will look else where for insurance cover.
Will this be another case of diverting government money in to a private company?
Everyone has been commenting on flood cover etc. What of our motor accident compensation scheme – this is managed by TIO?
This sale could not only put our houses at more risk but motoring in the Northern Territory as well.

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