The upgrade of Moree Airport continues to progress according to plan, with construction on the $2.5 million project passing the halfway mark.
Northern Tablelands MP Adam Marshall said Moree Plains Shire Council was piloting the project, using local contractors, with a completion date before the end of the year.
Mr Marshall inspected the site recently with the council’s Executive Projects Manager John Carleton to get an update on the works.
The upgrade is jointly funded by all three levels of government, with $1.5 million in funding coming from the NSW Government’s Regional Tourism Infrastructure program.
“This upgrade is so important and will ensure the airport can continue to service the community and the needs of commercial carriers,” Mr Marshall said.
“Airport infrastructure needs to be constantly maintained to keep up with regulatory requirements and this project means the airport will be able to keep delivering a reliable service for Moree residents into the future.
“The upgrades include improvements to the drainage, lighting and the pavements, and the funding for these critical works are coming from the state and federal governments and council.
“Local contractors are working on this project and we should see the drainage works completed by mid-June. It’s great to see local contractors employed on these large scale projects, keeping money and highly skilled jobs in our community.”
Mr Marshall said around 22,000 square metres of bulk earthworks had been completed so far, with around four kilometres of open drainage channels constructed including some extensive rock beaching for erosion control.
A further 120 tonnes of box culverts, base slabs, headwalls and other infrastructure linking the runway, taxiway and aircraft parking areas, are nearing completion.
“The project will go a long way towards making rain events easier to manage at the airport because currently even a small rain fall event can be problematic,” Mr Marshall said.
“The upgrades solve this by enhancing the overland flow of water and so the runways and surrounding area will then be more manageable when rain happens, and comply with air safety requirements.
“Moree’s reputation as a transport and agricultural hub is critical to its continued growth, and these upgrades are integral to its hub capability. I will continue to do everything I can to support Moree’s improvement and connection to major cities via air travel. Moree has fought hard to have air services and that connection will be made even more secure with an upgraded airport.
“Moree Plains Shire Council has done a great job being proactive in this regard by securing the funding and I look forward to this project being fully completed before the end of the year.”