Upgrades to Emerald’s Saleyards and Airport will be funded with $2.5 million through Round 4 of the Palaszczuk Government’s successful $295 million Building our Regions (BoR) program.
Minister for State Development, Manufacturing, Infrastructure and Planning Cameron Dick said both projects would be a boon to the local economy.
“The Emerald Saleyards complex is the Central Highlands’ premier livestock selling centre, yarding up to 100,000 head of prime and store cattle a year and hosting major weaner and feeder sales during winter,” Mr Dick said.
“This $1 million BoR project – funding which will be matched by Central Highlands Regional Council – will upgrade the saleyards complex to provide a larger spelling area, double-decker dump ramp, all-weather hay shed, and shade structure.
“Combined sales numbers at Emerald Saleyards have risen nearly 25 per cent since 2010-11, while private sales numbers are up over 500 per cent.
“Over this same time period, total sales revenue, including yard fees, feeding and dipping charges, has grown more than 40 per cent – increased demand that’s created the need for these upgrades.
“Meanwhile, the Emerald Airport project will see upgrades to the general aviation area, which will encourage increased aviation activity to the region,” he said.
“The works will involve reconstructing the general and eastern aviation apron, and the refuelling area, in addition to widening the taxiway apron.
“The total cost for the airport project is $3,039,663, with $1,519,831 funded through BoR and Central Highlands Regional Council contributing $103,615. The Australian Government will contribute the remaining $1,416,217.”
Central Highlands Regional Council Mayor Kerry Hayes acknowledged the important partnership between state government and council.
“The Emerald Saleyards and Emerald Airport General Aviation upgrades unlock growth potential for two important Central Highlands commercial facilities,” Mr Hayes said.
“The Emerald Saleyards are the region’s premier livestock selling centre and the fifth largest in Queensland, with beef cattle making up 70 per cent of our region’s $740 million agricultural industry.
“Meanwhile, Emerald Airport is the 34th largest airport in Australia and an important gateway to the region, with around 208,000 passengers through the doors each year.
“Connectivity to our region is vital, and upgrading the general aviation infrastructure at the airport will unlock future development opportunities for the airport and local businesses.”
Round 4 of Building our Regions will see the Palaszczuk Government partner with 37 councils on 49 projects – work which will create an estimated 657 jobs.
Under previous rounds, the program has allocated $225 million to 174 critical infrastructure projects across the state, generating 1762 jobs and attracting additional investment of $353.5 million from councils and other organisations.
Central Highlands Regional Council has received $17.85 million through previous BoR rounds, including $2,242,489 in Round 2 to resurface and strengthen the Emerald Airport runway, taxiway and apron bays.
Learn more about the Building our Regions program.