The WA Government is investing $18.3 million to upgrade a stretch of unsealed road that connects the East Kimberley to NT.
Moonamang Road is seen as a vital link between Western Australia and the Northern Territory. The upgrade aims to provide the transport infrastructure required to boost agricultural growth in the Ord, support the Ord development and aquaculture projects, and benefit local indigenous and non-indigenous communities.
WA Regional Development Minister Alannah MacTiernan says the Moonamang Road development has been brought forward to stimulate the local economy and help the Knox development get underway.
“Moonamang Road is vitally important for the local community and businesses, and connects the East Kimberley Region to the Northern Territory,” she says. “It is a crucial connection for freight and exports for the agriculture and food industry in the East Kimberley, and will create even more opportunities in this burgeoning region.”
The capital works project will support the local economy and deliver local outcomes in line with the WA Recovery Plan, recognising the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on the East Kimberley economy.
“This Government is committed to providing more economic opportunities for the East Kimberley, which is struggling with the impacts of COVID-19,” says WA Premier Mark McGowan.
“This major infrastructure project will not only create jobs, but also improve accessibility for local industry, including aquaculture, agriculture and mining, in the region.”
The $18.3 million project includes a realignment to support the proposed Knox Plain development of Ord Stage 2 and allow for the expansion of cotton production in the East Kimberley.
Sealing the road will also have benefits for the Project Sea Dragon black tiger prawn aquaculture project, a local lead and silver mine, onshore gas exploration and the expansion at Legune Station.
The project will seal 7.5km of the Moonamang Road through to the border, and will significantly improve accessibility for the local community and businesses who rely on the road for transport during the wet season.
The upgraded road will also provide all-year access for traditional owners to Miriuwung-Gajerrong Traditional Lands, and provide more opportunities for ‘on country’ cultural practices.
The work will take place during the next two dry seasons, and contractors, materials and equipment will be sourced from the region where possible.