Roads for strong rural communities

Article image - Roads for strong rural communities Roadwork underway in the Strathbogie Shire.

Strathbogie Shire Council in Victoria is investing in roads to help its rural communities flourish.

The council recently announced it would be investing $3.5 million into the road network in the coming years.

An exciting item in Council’s budget is the lease of an additional heavy grader, which will significantly increase road maintenance.
Council is also lifting ‘Class 0’ roads to ‘Class 1’ standard, which means they will receive regular
maintenance.

Previously, many roads in the Shire were classified ‘Class 0’ roads, which meant minimal maintenance was given to them, only needing to be accessible enough for emergency service vehicles.

In the first 12 months, this will mean an upgrade to over 60 of the currently ‘Class 0’ roads, which will receive drainage, gravel spreading and grading work to bring them to a ‘Class 1’ standard.
Mount Wombat Ward Councillor Alistair Thomson said upgrades to the road network would support the Council Plan to build flourishing communities by strengthening the rural sector in the Shire.

“Our rural sector is the largest economic contributor and major employer in our Shire and road access is crucial for rural residents and businesses,” he said.

This will vastly improve the condition of gravel roads in the Shire, which make up over 1500kms of the network.

These initiatives are in response to many concerns voiced by local residents through the Strathbogie Shire Council’s ‘Let’s Talk-We are Listening’ campaign.

“In the ‘Conversation Cafes’ conducted with residents, those who lived in the rural areas reported time and time again the problems with the gravel road network,” he said.

The commitment to roads is just one of several new directions taken in the new Council Plan under consultation with local residents.