Access to the developing Orange Health and Innovation Precinct will be improved and the community one step closer to benefitting from business investment with significant upgrades planned for Forest Road, thanks to $954,000 from the NSW Government.
Deputy and Minister for Regional NSW John Barilaro announced the grant from the $170 million Drought Stimulus Package to improve a large section of the arterial road outside Orange Public Hospital before
Mr Barilaro said upgrades would be made to Forest Road between the Hospital and Canobolas Rural Fire Service headquarters with funding to pay for guttering, kerb, drainage, widening of existing pavement and improved car parking.
“This upgrade that will improve safety, reduce congestion and speed up travel times for those living and working in the area while ensuring that the road can suitably accommodate heavy vehicles important to local industries, such as the Cadia mine,” Mr Barilaro said.
“With the right conditions, local businesses will also be able to expand and create more local jobs, with flow-on benefits in the wider region.
Mr Barilaro said the NSW Government is taking action to provide regions with the infrastructure they need to succeed, and that the Drought Stimulus Package grant will generate immediate economic activity in Orange.
“We know that not every business in the bush grows crops or grazes livestock, so it’s vital to support off-farm industries by driving business activity quickly through new opportunities,” Mr Barilaro said.
“This project is ready to be delivered now, with construction to create jobs for tradies, suppliers and contractors, allowing them to earn money locally which they go on to spend locally,” Mr Barilaro said.
“Regional NSW is struggling through one of the worst droughts on record and every day the crippling impact extends further beyond the farm gate, so I’m pleased to confirm this project just one month after the stimulus package was announced.”
Orange City Council Mayor Reg Kidd welcomed news of the funding which he said would be matched by a council contribution of $1 million to deliver the project.
“The job opportunities that follow from this project in both the immediate future and down the track will give our community some much-needed relief from the pressures of drought,” Mr Kidd said.
“The Forest Road upgrade is key to our vision for the Orange Health and Innovation Precinct and I am delighted to accept this funding which brings us closer to making this vision a reality.
“I thank the NSW Government for its significant financial support for this project and its support for regional communities during these challenging times.”
For further information about the NSW Government’s Drought Stimulus Package visit www.nsw.gov.au/droughtstimuluspackage