Federal Government approves $200,000 Burrum Bridge spend
THE long-awaited Burrum Bridge could be a step closer after a $200,000 feasibility study was approved.
Federal Minister for Infrastructure and Transport Darren Chester said the study would investigate potential alignment options between Burrum and Buxton.
The approval comes after "additional information from the Fraser Coast Regional Council" was received.
"The Australian Government committed $200,000 during the 2016 election campaign towards a feasibility study for a new road bridge over the Burrum River," Mr Chester said.
"The Fraser Coast Regional Council recently provided the Australian Government with the necessary information to progress the study which is expected to explore the overall cost of a new bridge, connecting roads and infrastructure, benefits to the community, environmental impacts and land acquisition. It is expected consultants will be appointed in the coming months."
Hinkler MP Keith Pitt said the study would finally prove whether or not the project was feasible.
"For 10 years this project has been discussed but no-one has ever had real facts on how much it would cost, where it would go, what traffic volumes it could bring and the economic impact," Mr Pitt said.
"I said the Federal Government would fund a feasibility study to see once and for all if this project stacks up. No more pie in the sky figures. We'll have a real budget that the Queensland State Government can use to assess whether it wants to fund this project."
Fraser Coast mayor Chris Loft said the feasibility study would deliver a much needed boost in confidence for the local business community.
Cr Loft and Bundaberg counterpart Jack Dempsey indicated the study would be completed by mid-2018.
'We hope the study will confirm if the benefits of a new road bridge outweigh the costs, which will put to bed the impasse of whether an additional road crossing over Burrum River has merit," Cr Dempsey said.
The $200,000 feasibility study for the Burrum Bridge is being fully funded by the Australian Government.