1st November 2018
A Federal Minister visited Gloucester this week at the invitation of Local Federal MP Dr David Gillespie to be briefed on a major $60-million upgrading plan to increase safety and the capacity of The Bucketts Way to cater for the region’s diverse industries.
Assistant Minister to the Deputy Prime Minister Andrew Broad met with representatives from Mid Coast Council, Advanced Gloucester, local business and the health care, beef, dairy and poultry industries to hear about the significant benefits that would flow from the upgrade.
The major upgrade includes additional passing lanes, wider bridges and further structural improvements to The Bucketts Way between Gloucester and the Pacific Highway at Twelve Mile Creek.
“Just recently I announced $5-million in Federal funding towards the $19.1-million first stage being undertaken by Mid Coast Council and the State Government, and I was particularly keen for the Minister to understand the importance of getting the next two stages underway,” Dr Gillespie said.
“Transport is vital for places like Booral, Stroud, Dungog, Gloucester, Barrington and all the various industries located along the corridor. The Bucketts Way is our region’s lifeline and must not only ensure that it is safe, but it has the capacity to provide local industries with the most efficient transport link so that the region can grow and prosper.”
“It was a great discussion because it gave the Minister the chance to understand the cost savings that a number of local industries would experience if further upgrades were to proceed.”
“It was also good for the Minister to see the various sections of The Bucketts Way between Taree and Gloucester that have been upgraded and improved as a result of the $16-million in Federal funding that was invested by our government in our first term in office and how similar investments in the future could achieve the outcomes we’re all looking for.”
Dr Gillespie said Minister Broad, who has Federal responsibility for the recently announced Roads of Strategic Importance initiative, invited Council to put forward a more detailed brief of the planned upgrade.
“While ultimately I believe The Bucketts Way ought to be a State Highway, I’m at the point now where I just want to see this upgrade done, and that is why I think the latest Federal program is a good opportunity to help with part of the cost in getting the last two stages of the upgrade plan underway,” Dr Gillespie said.