WAITING GAME: Western Downs mayor Paul McVeigh said the delay in the range crossing was disappointing, but the opportunities were still there.
WAITING GAME: Western Downs mayor Paul McVeigh said the delay in the range crossing was disappointing, but the opportunities were still there. Joseph Barclay

Western Downs will play waiting game

TROUBLES on the Second Range Crossing in Toowoomba which has led to its delay in completion is a disappointment for the Western Downs.

Mayor Paul McVeigh said the potentially seven-month delay was unfortunate, but it has not diminished his excitement for the project.

Cr McVeigh said once completed, the $1.6billion project will open vast opportunities for the area.

"We are disappointed (in the delay) but in the grand scheme of things it is a great opportunity for us,” Cr McVeigh said.

"The range crossing will be an absolute benefit to anyone west of Toowoomba,” Cr McVeigh said.

"We are hoping to see a lot more weekend traffic with people on the Coast closer to us, and places like Dalby now will hopefully see a boost in people staying overnight.”

In conjunction with the airport at Wellcamp, the agriculture industry in the Western Downs is poised to thrive.

The shorter commute between the Western Downs and the Coast will potentially lead to growth in the intensive agriculture sector, according to the mayor.

"Because places like Dalby will now fall into that two-hour radius, this opens up a whole new range of opportunities for us,” he said.

"We are now a shorter drive to the bigger centres, which means new, different agriculture will consider our region when deciding where to base their businesses.”


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