Key roads to be upgraded with funding

Caitlyn WattsPilbara News
Minilya - Exmouth Road.
Camera IconMinilya - Exmouth Road. Credit: Tom Zaunmayr.

Roads in Exmouth are set to be given a $20 million upgrade in a bid to improve safety, promote tourism and boost local jobs.

The WA Government secured Commonwealth funding to deliver the road project in conjunction with the Shire of Exmouth, helping create up to 90 local jobs as part of the Regional Road Safety program.

Two sections of the Minilya-Exmouth Road that was built in 1964 and provides access to Ningaloo Reef will be widened and resurfaced to meet the increase in tourist demand.

Upgrades include an 18km section, about 3km south of the Ningaloo turn-off to 3km north of Burkett Road, widened from 5.6m to 9m.

Priority sections will also be upgraded between the North West Coastal Highway turn-off towards the Lyndon River Crossing to help target sections with high embankments and substandard width to improve safety, particularly during the wet season.

Funding was also allocated for the realignment of Yardie Creek Road around the Lighthouse Caravan Park development.

Shire of Exmouth chief executive Cameron Woods welcomed the funding and said the existing narrow roads were not fully equipped to accommodate big caravans, boat trailers and over-width vehicles.

“These improved safety measures are of significant importance, not only for Exmouth but for the whole Coral Coast, supporting new fly-drive initiatives and meeting the increased expectations of new visitor markets,” he said.

“Planned upgrades to key thoroughfares such as Minilya-Exmouth Road and Yardie Creek Road will make it safer and easier for locals and tourists accessing key visitor attractions in and around Exmouth.”

The Federal Member for Durack Melissa Price said getting shovels in the ground on local road projects was important for maintaining jobs and economic growth.

“These types of infrastructure projects will be particularly crucial for helping us bounce back after the COVID-19 crisis has ended by ensuring we have the safe transport connections needed for all Australians to keep moving,” she said.

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