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Haulage road funding bid

Thursday, 21st July, 2011

Mayor Wincen Cuy is quietly confident both state and federal governments will come up with the millions of dollars still required to fund the city’s eastern haulage road.

Council has already called for expressions of interest for the design and construction of the 10.8km road, the estimated cost of which has blown out to $8.2 million.

A report to Council on the status of the project said physical work was expected to start towards the end of the year and be finished by the middle of 2012 - as long as funding is secured.

Council is part-funding the project along with mining company Perilya, whose ore trucks will use the road to transport material from the Potosi mine to its Southern operations.

But the bulk of the funding is expected to come from both the state and federal governments.

Mayor Cuy said yesterday he was “quietly confident” about Council’s funding submissions.

“We’re confident everything will work out in the long run,” he said.

Council, he said, had “put up a pretty good case” in its submission to the Australian Government (through Regional Development Australia), and was equally upbeat about its submission to the State.

He said Deputy NSW Premier Andrew Stoner had “a good look” at the proposal during a visit to the city earlier this year with other members of the Nationals party room.

But the clock is ticking on the project which will link the Sydney road to the Wentworth road.

Perilya has permission to the use the city’s streets to transport material to its mill if the by-pass road is not ready by the time production at Potosi begins in about 18 months.

“We’re hoping the state and federal governments will give us a decision in the next four to six weeks,” Mayor Cuy told the BDT. In the meantime, Council was doing everything it could to progress the project.

“While we’re waiting for these things to happen we’re putting things in place so we’ll be shovel-ready.”

Mayor Cuy also defended a cost blow-out to the project which has gone from $5m to $8.2m.

Mayor Cuy said the $5m was based on an all-weather sealed road and the latest estimate was based on a bitumised road.

The report to Council said the estimated $8.2m included a $1.2m “contingency amount”.

“We’re saying that’s at the top end ... but we don’t believe it will be that,” Mayor Cuy said.

While he was unsure whether the road would reduce the amount of heavy vehicle traffic travelling through the city, Mayor Cuy said a second by-pass road linking the Adelaide Road to the Sydney Road was still planned..

“That’s out long term goal.”


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