As a result of Queensland’s regular tropical storms from both the Arafura and Coral Seas, the state is always looking to improve its infrastructure. However, in many cases, construction teams can’t get to particular site in time and the strong winds and rain impact on vital roads and other facilities.
This is the case on Nine Mile Road, part of the Alton Downs suburb in Rockhampton. According to Chair of Council’s Local Disaster Management Group, Tony Williams the road has been plunged underwater four times in the last five years as a result of flooding.
Floodway reconstruction project
As a fix, the Rockhampton Regional Council has announced that it will receive funding to address this issue. Construction is expected to begin in 2016 with the current floodway removed and a wider alternative put in its place.
Mr Williams explained that the council was successful in its submission to the Natural Disaster Relief and Recovery Arrangements (NDRRA) and will soon get to task on fixing the road.
“This funding is a joint initiative of the Commonwealth and State governments to provide disaster relief and infrastructure restoration and helps communities recover from the effects of natural disasters,” he said.
“This funding will assist Council’s efforts in fully reconstructing the floodway in this area of Nine Mile Road and we sincerely thank all organisations involved for their support toward this project.”
Natural disasters cost the Queensland government and local councils billions a year. However, the infrastructure projects that are associated with preventing or fixing these problems can provide a number of opportunities to construction businesses and, in particular, Queensland apprentices.
Disaster infrastructure boost
According to a July media statement out of the Queensland government, more than $60 million was allocated in the most recent State Budget to councils to fix local infrastructure before the next storm season.
“The funding will ensure local government are able to protect existing public infrastructure, boost their communities’ resilience and minimise future expenditure on restoring assets damaged in the wake of a future disaster,” Minister for Infrastructure, Local Government and Planning Jackie Trad explained.
The government stated that projects could include stormwater systems, detention basins, roadways and levees.
Planning for disasters is an important part of Queensland economy. As such, it provides construction employers with the chance to expand their workforce and train key apprentices for the future.
By Leanne Macnamara, Public Relations Coordinator