Local jobs ready to be untapped with Rookwood agreement
Published Thursday, 17 December, 2020 at 11:45 AM
Treasurer and Minister for Investment
The Honourable Cameron Dick
Minister for Regional Development and Manufacturing and Minister for Water
The Honourable Glenn Butcher
Central Queensland workers and irrigators are the winners following the signing of an agreement that will shift delivery of Rookwood Weir into high gear.
At least 140 local jobs will flow after Sunwater and its construction partners received Palaszczuk Government approval to enter Stage 2 of the $352.2 million project, to be built on the Fitzroy River west of Rockhampton,
Treasurer and Minister for Investment Cameron Dick said water from the weir would underpin economic and agricultural growth in the region, boosting employment and supporting communities.
“Rookwood Weir is transformational water infrastructure that will deliver hundreds of jobs during and after construction,” Mr Dick said.
“It will also enable the increase of irrigated agricultural production in the lower Fitzroy, giving farmers greater opportunity to expand and put on more workers.
“Our government has been committed to Rookwood Weir from the project’s infancy because we understand its importance to central Queensland when it comes to job creation and the region’s agricultural industry at large.
“Funding for this next stage is locked in, so it’s now time to get more boots on the ground to help the region build back better following the global COVID-19 pandemic.”
Minister for Water Glenn Butcher said construction of the weir was already providing benefits to the local economy – with more on the horizon as the project progresses.
“Preliminary on-site works have started, with a range of activities to be undertaken before in-river construction begins in April 2021,” Mr Butcher said.
“We already have 24 local workers engaged in tasks covering surveying, environmental science, cultural heritage, drilling and construction.
“This number will continue to grow as we head into 2021 and activities at the weir site ramp up.
“This will provide great opportunities for quality local jobs, with many opportunities for local businesses to supply goods and services to the project.”
Gladstone-based McCosker Contracting and Acciona Australia have committed to sourcing at least 140 construction jobs locally – with apprentices and trainees comprising 15 per cent of the workforce.
More than 270 central Queensland businesses have already registered their details as potential service providers on the project’s dedicated web registry rookwoodweir.icn.org.au.
The businesses include machinery operators, labourers, plumbing and electrical contractors, catering, office suppliers.
A number of work packages are expected to be released in early-2021.
Sunwater Chief Executive Officer Glenn Stockton said significant progress had been made on three road projects supporting the weir.
“Two upgrades – to Thirsty Creek Road and the Gogango Intersection – have already been completed, while construction to deliver a new bridge at Riverslea crossing is on track for completion in mid-2021,” Mr Stockton said.
The Rookwood Weir project is jointly funded by the Australian and Queensland Governments, and delivered in partnership with Sunwater.
About Rookwood Weir
Rookwood Weir is being constructed on the Fitzroy River, 66 kilometres south-west of Rockhampton.
The thousands of megalitres of water it will make available will underpin agricultural growth and supply industrial and urban water in central Queensland.
The project will provide for more than 200 jobs during construction – with at least 140 of these to be sourced from Central Queensland. Additionally, 95 per cent of project costs will be spent in Queensland.
Construction is scheduled to start by April 2021, and finish in 2023.
Media contacts: Geoff Breusch 0417 272 875 (Treasurer); Daniel Lato 0438 891 158 (Minister Butcher)