Why new hospital, infrastructure is vital for town growth
With drought continuing to tighten and an expanding population, Lockyer Valley Regional Council mayor Tanya Milligan said the region’s priorities were vital for the future.
She said the Lockyer’s priorities centred around vital infrastructure – including both road and rail – health and water.
“We desperately need to secure a long-term, reliable water supply for our whole community,” Cr Milligan said.
“It would enable our farmers and community some real, long-term opportunities for planning, growth and economic sustainability.”
It is “simply unacceptable” for women of the Lockyer to be unable to give birth in town, forcing them to travel to Toowoomba or Ipswich, Cr Milligan said.
With 42,000 residents and 3000 businesses, Cr Milligan said the state government needed to secure land for the regional-sized hospital.
“The state government needs to recognise this project as a priority for the long-term future of the Lockyer Valley and act now,” she said.
Included in her plea was the need to ensure the Inland Rail project would not wreak havoc on the region.
“At the end of the day, our communities will be faced with a freight railway that splits our region and we’ll need both the State and Federal Governments to dig deep to compensate local government areas like the Lockyer Valley that will be so severely impacted,” Cr Milligan said.
Cr Milligan said the Inland Rail Interface Improvement Business Case was looking for benefits the project could bring to the region.
LVRC was selected as one of four areas nationally to be fast-tracked for inclusion in the program.
“While there may be some level of increased local employment, as well as the possibility for Lockyer Valley businesses to be involved in aspects of the development – we are looking for more through the Business Case process,” Cr Milligan said.