Cape York Roads will now be open - Cook Shire Council update

Submitted: Friday, Mar 26, 2010 at 17:18
ThreadID: 77213 Views:3501 Replies:2 FollowUps:0
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Good news has arrived, common sense prevailed - see below

Current Road Advice

Minister for Climate Change and Sustainability
The Honourable Kate Jones
Friday, March 26, 2010
STATE GOVT AND COOK SHIRE COUNCIL WORKING TO SUPPORT CAPE YORK ROAD NETWORK
The Queensland Government and Cook Shire Council have reached agreement to ensure gravel for road maintenance on the Cape can be undertaken with minimum environmental impact.
Climate Change and Sustainability Minister Kate Jones, the Member for Cook Jason O’Brien and Cook Shire Mayor Peter Scott said today that the Department of Environment and Resource Management and Cook Shire Council were working together to address immediate issues and find long-term solutions.
“Director-General John Bradley and other senior government representatives met with Cook Shire Mayor, Peter Scott and Member for Cook Jason O’Brien in Brisbane to discuss the ongoing maintenance of council roads in Lakefield National Park and other areas across Cape York Peninsula,” Ms Jones said.
Mr O’Brien said: “The meeting was very positive and the council and DERM have an agreed process to resolve the immediate issues for road repairs following the wet season.”
Ms Jones said the council maintained a number of gazetted roads that traversed protected areas, in particular Lakefield National Park, a biodiversity-rich haven with coastal estuaries, mangroves and mudflats, wetlands, vast grasslands and woodlands.
“It’s important that we maintain the roads while taking care of Lakefield National Park, which is a refuge for threatened species such as the golden shouldered parrot, star finch and the red goshawk,” she said.
Cook Shire Council Mayor Peter Scott said that after the wet season, both parties are taking steps on the ground to ensure repairs to damaged roads could progress so that the council could provide safe roads for the upcoming tourism season.
“I am confident that together we can find a solution to this problem,” Mr Scott said.
“Roads closures are a big problem in this part of the world and while we can’t control the elements, I believe we can arrive at viable solutions on how we maintain our roads.
“We must work quickly and cooperatively to come up with sustainable solutions as the demand for gravel and water resources to maintain our roads increases every year and the extraction arrangements we have in place are no longer sufficient.”
Ms Jones said that Cook Shire Council had advised that heavy rain and severe flooding this wet season has led to significant damage to both council roads and the highway.
“The problem has arisen where the amount of gravel in road reserves where council historically sourced materials to maintain the roads has been depleted and it is important that council find environmentally responsible long-term solutions.
Ms Jones said the agencies would work co-operatively to address longer-term access to materials for road maintenance, while ensuring environmental considerations are adhered to and the biodiversity values of the area are not damaged.
“Historically the council has maintained the roads by sourcing gravel from within the road reserve corridor but as gravel pits on these sites have been depleted we need to look at options that ensure the Cape remains accessible in an environmentally responsible manner.”
DERM and Cook Shire Council will liaise with other state government agencies as well as the Aboriginal Councils to address the issue.
26 March, 2010
MEDIA CONTACT: 3239 0818

Cheers Tony
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Reply By:- Friday, Mar 26, 2010 at 18:20

Friday, Mar 26, 2010 at 18:20
Great stuff Tony, thanks for the info.

Thank god common sense prevailed. Now I can get back to planning my trip.

Regards
Ev
AnswerID: 410525

Reply By: jdwynn (Adelaide) - Friday, Mar 26, 2010 at 22:41

Friday, Mar 26, 2010 at 22:41
thanks Tony, and now our CY trip planning continues, no doubt towards throwing a good amount of money at the local economy up there. I'm sure the Gov / Council realise that.....Cheers
AnswerID: 410586

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