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Council projects

Ongoing projects

  • Yamala Enterprise Area - Stormwater management

    Council  engaged ACS Engineers to undertake stormwater drainage master planning for the Yamala Enterprise Area and associated studies. The area is a proposed primary development area and regional transport hub (more info below).

    This plan is intended to provide high level guidance for the design and approval of stormwater management infrastructure for the site.

  • Yamala Enterprise Area - Building Our Regions funding secured

    The Yamala Enterprise Area refers collectively to a parcel of land identified in the Central Highlands Regional Council Planning Scheme comprising of 360 hectares of land zoned ‘special industry’ and a further 1640 hectares of land zoned ‘industry investigation’.

    The initial stage involves a major upgrade to the intersection of the Capricorn Highway and Bonnie Doon Road, construction of a 1.5 kilometre rail siding and an upgrade to Bonnie Doon Road for access to the site.

    This infrastructure is a critical enabler to allow the intermodal port to proceed.

    Located 22 kilometres east of Emerald, the area is strategically located to service supply chain operators and producers, maximising existing infrastructure networks with direct access to the Capricorn Highway (via Bonnie Doon Road) and major freight rail network.

    The 360 hectares of land zoned ‘special industry’ incorporates the Louis Dreyfus Cotton Gin, an 8-stand cotton ginning operation, and pending State Government support will feature:
    – An inter-modal freight facility, the CQ Inland Port
    – A state-of-art grain facility and rail siding providing fast 36-hour train cycling time to Gladstone, the ability to handle longer 42 wagon unit trains without shunting wagons and higher capacity wagons in the future, and efficiently handle local grain away from the Emerald urban areas.
    – An initial 11 industrial lots ranging in size from 10,000m2 to 40,000m2

    In partnership with the developers of the CQ Inland Port (CQIP) and GrainCorp, Central Highlands Regional Council has committed to provide extensive support to the development of the greenfield Yamala Enterprise Area.

    Subsequently, council has secured State Government support of $4.415M through Building our Regions Infrastructure Fund, Round 3 to kick start the Yamala Enterprise Area.

  • Blackwater Sewage Treatment Plant effluent irrigation extension project - Building Our Regions funding secured

    Funding for the Effluent Irrigation Extension Project has been secured under the state government Building Our Regions funding program will bring the Blackwater Sewage Treatment Plant in line with environmental requirements for the discharge of treated waste water.

    Council funded the first stage of this project and will match the $1.2 million in state government funding for stage two.

    We identified two sites whereby treated effluent could be discharged, being the
    areas of the Hunter Street Sports Precinct and the nearby Blackwater Golf Course and adjoining Blackwater Model/Aero/Heli/Car Club.

    Following detailed analysis, we resolved to deliver a two-stage process to meet environmental requirements:

    • Stage 1 (Hunter Street Irrigation System): Includes installation of irrigation systems at the STP and Hunter Street Sports Precinct, storage tanks at Hunter Street and electrical and control works including the Supervisory Control and Data Acquisition (SCADA) system to control effluent pumping to Hunter Street. Award of tender (2016T108C) was approved by council resolution on 14 February 2017 and this project is currently underway. We were the sole funding contributor and will deliver this stage of the project at a cost of $1.4M.
    • Stage 2 (Golf Course Land): Includes the extension of irrigation throughout the
      Blackwater Golf Course and adjoining Blackwater Model/Aero/Heli/Car Club including pipework and trenching, pump upgrades, fitting valves and irrigations sprays and the construction of a high density polyethyelene (HDPE) lining (storage pond) at the Blackwater Sewage Treatment Plant.
  • Central Highlands floodways program - Building Our Regions funding secured

    The Queensland Government have announced $790k in funding for the Central Highlands Regional Floodways Program to improve the resilience of the rural road network.

    Council will match this funding to deliver the project which involves the construction of concrete floodways at twenty four sites in the region to provide safe crossing during wet weather.

    Concrete floodways provide channelised drainage points in which overland run off water may cross the road providing a suitable and safe crossing for vehicles travelling along the network. Thus, these works aim to reduce the time in which residents are impacted and/or isolated during wet weather events.

    Nominated sites have been identified by reviewing digital mapping of previous flood events and locating those which consistently become damaged following rain events. These sites present a recurring issue when considering access for the rural remote community into regional centres.

    Construction works will take approximately four months to complete, and include:

    • Removal of existing pavement at nominated sites
    • Replacement with 30m*8m concrete floodway, inclusive of cut off walls
    • Stabilise 15m approaches on both sides of floodway (full width)
    • Removal of excess material
  • Blackwater Skate Park

    This $1.45 million project is jointly funded by CHRC and the Queensland Government’s Active Community Infrastructure program. Coronado Global Resources (Curragh Mine) also donated funds towards the concept design phase. The skate park design was developed with community engagement conducted via design workshops and a survey on the Have Your Say, Central Highlands platform. The new facility is expected to open in July 2021. It will cater to a range of skateboarding styles and abilities and include a pump track for beginner and intermediate bike riders, shelters, lighting, CCTV, landscaping and seating.

  • Blackwater's old pool precinct redevelopment

    The masterplan for Blackwater’s old pool precinct will be delivered over multiple stages, beginning in the 2020-2021 financial year. Works will commence with the establishment of a memorial garden that acknowledges the history of the site.

    The site’s design scope aimed to ensure all precinct elements integrate harmoniously.

    Redevelopment plans incorporate the old aquatic centre, council offices, library, Lions park and adjacent open space.

    Local stakeholders provided feedback in November and December 2018, informing the concept design for the precinct. The masterplan was endorsed by council in July 2020, informed by community, councillors and officer feedback.

    For further information, please contact the Manager Community Parks and Recreation on 1300 242 686.

  • Riley's Crossing Road - Bridge over the Mackenzie River - POSTPONED

    The project to repair the bridge over the Mackenzie River on Riley’s Crossing Road has been postponed due to the recent wet weather. (12 January 2021)

Completed projects

  • Emerald Airport runway resurfacing and general aviation upgrades

    As part of a $16 million capital investment in the Emerald Airport, the Central Highlands Regional Council and Boral Asphalt carried out important upgrades to the main runway and general aviation area.

    The works included:

    • Resurfacing the main runway, taxiway and apron bays
    • Reconstructing the general and eastern aviation apron, and the refuelling area
    • Expanding the general aviation apron.
  • Gemfields Bounded Locality Project - completed April 2020

    Anakie, Rubyvale and Sapphire are town names officially registered in the Queensland Place Names Register and administered by the Queensland Department of Natural Resources, Mines and Energy (DNRME) under the Place Names Act 1994 (Qld).

    ‘The Gemfields’ was the bounded locality, officially registered under the Place Names Act 1994 (Qld). A bounded locality is defined by specific physical boundaries that act as reference points.

    This makes bounded localities useful for finding locations used by a variety of organisations and for a variety of purposes including:

    • Emergency services locating call-out sites.
    • GPS devices and Google maps for navigation.
    • Australia Post by linking postcodes to bounded localities.
    • Companies for addressing using geocoding software.

    Anakie, Rubyvale and Sapphire are the three towns within the old ‘The Gemfields’ bounded locality.

    This bounded locality was created 20 years ago during a national push to ensure that all of Australia is bounded for location and wayfinding purposes. It is thought to have a connection to the roll out of Telstra’s mobile phone infrastructure at the time.

    Since then, communities within ‘The Gemfields’ bounded locality had experienced address related problems that could be associated with the locality itself.

    Problems associated with the bounded locality encompassing the three towns include:

    • Failed and false delivery of mail and freight for people and businesses.
    • Difficulty in locating call-out sites experienced by emergency services.
    • Wayfinding challenges experienced by tourists.
    • Loss of identity, historical heritage and sense of belonging.

    In 2017, Rubyvale Progress Association undertook a petition in Rubyvale and Sapphire seeking to resolve the problems. The petition was submitted to council counting 547 signatures, around 42 percent of ‘The Gemfields’ residents aged 19 and over.

    Project objective

    The Gemfields Bounded Locality project sought the following outcomes:

    1. Validate majority support to dissolve ‘The Gemfields’ bounded locality.
    2. If the mandate exists, develop a proposal for alternative bounded localities.

    It has been identified that the Fairbairn Dam community was both within ‘The Gemfields’ and ‘Gindie’ bounded localities. Similar issues to those experienced in Sapphire, Rubyvale and Anakie had been reported. It was proposed to realign the locality boundaries and move the community into the exiting ‘Emerald’ bounded locality.

    Frequently asked questions

    How will the Willows be affected?

    As there are currently no indications that the problems experienced with ‘The Gemfields’ locality directly impact ‘The Willows’ locality, there are no proposed changes to the bounded locality ‘The Willows’.

    There are known issues with re-routing mail to ‘The Willows’ not intended for that locality that are caused by the lack of names for the Rubyvale, Anakie and Sapphire communities.

    Will the town names be changed?

    No, the town names of Rubyvale, Anakie and Sapphire will not be changed.

    Why can there just be new bounded localities called Sapphire and Anakie?

    There are clear constraints, rules and guidelines for the national register of bounded localities that do not allow the duplication of names.

    Why would there be changes to the Emerald bounded locality?

    The Fairbairn Dam community near Emerald is part of both ‘The Gemfields’ and ‘Gindie’ localities. Similar issues to those experienced in Sapphire, Rubyvale and Anakie have been reported there. There is an opportunity to carry out additional administrative re-alignments within the project.

    Why can’t there be separate postcodes instead or additional to a bounded locality change?

    Problems experienced stem from the bounded locality name, not the postcode. Changes to postcodes are only considered when problems are connected directly to the postcode.

    What will indicate the success of this project?

    Part of the project is a proposed review to determine the overall success and to identify any further actions required.

    October 2019 – Update

    The proposal to change the bounded locality names was published in the Government Gazette on 11 October 2019 by the DRNME.

    Comments on the proposal were invited up until 13 December 2019.

    April 2020 – Update

    The place name decision was published in the Government Gazette on the 17 April 2020.

    The Department of Natural Resources, Mines and Energy issued a media release on the same day.

    The state government will update its mapping and address database and share it with stakeholders that include emergency services and Australia Post.

    It could take up to 12 months before Google updates its system.

    Residents can now use the new locality names as their address to ensure the safe delivery of mail and the timely response by emergency services.

More project information - Central Highlands Development Corporation

Visit the Central Highlands Development Corporation for more information about major projects in the Central Highlands.

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