July 13, 2018
Kingaroy’s CBD upgrade has been put on hold after the South Burnett Regional Council’s bid for a $2 million contribution to the project was turned down by the Federal Government.
The failure of Council’s application to the Building Better Regions program was announced on Friday.
Had the grant been successful, the Council would have chipped in an extra $3 million of its own funds to build the first stage of the project.
This would have been followed by a second, $3 million stage within the following two years.
Late last year Council spent $250,000 to hire consultants to draw up plans for the project.
Those plans, which were unveiled in March, included the creation of a new sealed car park on former railway land near Haly Street; upgrades to Kingaroy, Haly and Alford streets; and the development of a “city heart” plaza in Glendon Street.
Mayor Keith Campbell said he was disappointed to hear the upgrade had received a thumbs down from Canberra.
“There will be disappointment among residents and business people who became extremely engaged with the street revitalisation process,” the Mayor said.
“We were all looking forward to seeing the general character of the town being updated and its appearance getting a lift.”
He said the council had made it clear during public consultations that the project was dependant on securing Building Better Regions funding.
“We also acknowledged that if we were not successful we would at least have a set of plans, adopted by the community, that could be resurrected at some other time for implementation.”
The Mayor said the council had many priorities for capital works, and councillors would now consider other options.
“The fact remains that the streetscape, if we reapply for it at some other time, will always require grant funding,” he said.