Mayor Andy Ireland, Deputy Mayor Adam Belot and Councillor Rhodes Watson (left) pictured with Michelle Landry inspecting the roadworks at Stanage Bay Road yesterday. PIC: Contributed
Mayor Andy Ireland, Deputy Mayor Adam Belot and Councillor Rhodes Watson (left) pictured with Michelle Landry inspecting the roadworks at Stanage Bay Road yesterday. PIC: Contributed

Millions poured into sealing defence and coastal access road

Millions of dollars have been splashed into a road upgrade that will seal the link between the Bruce Highway and part of the Central Queensland coastline.

The first stage of works is underway on the major project of sealing 39.7km of Stanage Bay Road.

The $21.6m project, which is fully-funded through the Federal Government’s Roads of Strategic Importance (ROSI) initiative, involves the upgrade of unsealed sections of Stanage Bay Road to sealed road standard between the Bruce Highway and the Army Access gate.

Livingstone Shire Mayor Andy Ireland said he and several councillors visited the site last week along with Member for Capricornia Michelle Landry to inspect the progress of the works.

“Over 3km of sealed road has been completed, along with sections of floodways, drainage and culverts as part of the road’s construction,” Cr Ireland said.

“It’s fantastic to see the works taking shape, and the jobs that this project will create throughout the duration of its construction. The progression of these works marks a huge step forward for both the Stanage community and the wider Livingstone Shire.

“Completion of this project will provide a nationally recognised ‘fit-for-purpose’ road corridor, appropriate for the scale and volume of the growing number of military and associated heavy transport vehicles that are currently traversing this council-maintained road, while also delivering economic and other benefits such as improved safety and access for all vehicles.

“This major infrastructure project will not only create jobs during the construction phase, it will also create future opportunities to progressively build a stronger and more vibrant tourism industry at Stanage Bay township.

“Council would like to sincerely thank Member for Capricornia Michelle Landry for her support towards this vital infrastructure project, as well as the Australian Government for its substantial funding contribution.”

Portfolio holder of Transport (Roads, Drainage, Pathways) councillor Glenda Mather said this road was a critical access route for Australian Defence Forces, primary producers, the Stanage Bay Township and emergency services and these upgrades would dramatically improve access for all of its users.

“Increased heavy vehicle traffic usage due to military exercises had placed greater pressure on Stanage Bay Road, the primary northern access route to Shoalwater Bay Training Area and Stanage Bay Township,” Cr Mather said.

“The sealing of the remainder of this section of road will also reduce council’s ongoing scheduled maintenance.”

Ms Landry said she was pleased the road works were well underway to improve the key linkage road to Stanage Bay.

“I lobbied very hard and was ultimately successful at securing $21.6 million at the federal election and I’m very happy to see it used to start construction,” Ms Landry said.

“Stanage Bay Road has a reputation across the region as being particularly troublesome for local graziers, fisherman, and travellers who often have to contend with poor conditions on the road.

“With funding from the Federal Government’s ROSI program, we can help ensure our motorists can travel to Stanage Bay via the Bruce Highway safely and on time.

“I would like to thank Mayor Andy Ireland and Livingstone Shire Council for working constructively with the Federal Government.”

The entire project is expected to be completed within three years, with potential interruptions to normal traffic flows during various stages of the works.