$22.7m flood levee will be money well spent
THE flood mitigation study to go before Gympie Regional Council tomorrow morning recommends the construction of a $22.7 million flood levee between the Bruce Hwy and the Mary River at Albert Park.
The levee, which will be 13m high at its highest point, will protect the CBD from all floods up to a height of 22m on the Kidd Bridge.
The report, by engineering firm Aurecon, also recommends construction of a new road link at Monkland Glanmire, from Penny Rd to Hyland Rd, and improvement works for Drummond Dr, providing access to a number of major employers in the area during a flood event at a cost of $4.4 million.
Mayor Ron Dyne said the report considered a range of options for flood-prone sites throughout the region with the levee and the new road the key recommendations.
"Aurecon has delivered a very thorough and comprehensive report which will be presented to council at the meeting this week," said Cr Dyne.
"The recommendations for the Gympie CBD levee and the new road at Monkland Glanmire both result in a positive cost benefit ratio and their implementation would provide significant economic and social benefits to the community, in particular the business community.
"In fact, had the levee been in place it would have prevented every flood since 1893, and 46 of the 47 floods with peak waters over 14m since flood records began in 1870."
Cr Dyne said the importance of attracting funding from external sources to act on the recommendations could not be overstated.
"Construction of the levee, in particular, will require funding assistance from the State and Federal Governments and we will commence discussions on that basis upon adoption of the recommendations by council," he said.
"The report also makes a number of recommendations regarding other locations across the region and these will be considered more fully in due course.
"Delivering outcomes that lessen the impact of floods on local residents and businesses is long overdue and I am hopeful we will receive the financial support we need to see these recommendations come to fruition.
"If implemented, this will be one of the most significant projects ever undertaken by council and will involve extensive stakeholder and community engagement to ensure everyone has a chance to learn more about the project."