THE Mareeba Wastewater Treatment Plant Upgrade was officially opened on 29 July by Senator Ian Macdonald and Mayor Tom Gilmore.
The $16 million upgraded Wastewater Treatment Plant will provide for the current population and into the future whilst also providing significant environmental benefits for the receiving waters of Two Mile Creek; a tributary of the Mitchell catchment.
Mayor Tom Gilmore said this is a significant achievement of this Council and the most important improvement in environmental outcomes for Mareeba Shire in many years.
“The current plant which is being replaced served Mareeba well for many years, however simply could not manage the growth in the community and could no longer meet environmental standards demanded of it,” Cr Gilmore said.
“The current Mareeba Shire Council has pursued this vision of replacing the old plant with vigour and I am delighted to see the culmination of that vision.”
The facility will have a capacity of 12,500 equivalent persons and allows for future expansion to increase the plant’s capacity to 16,500 equivalent persons.
Minister for Regional Development Fiona Nash said the project‘s first phase was constructing the new plant, with works now beginning on demolishing the old one.
“This project forms part of the Australian Government’s commitment to promote economic development in Australia’s regions, and was a perfect candidate for the National Stronger Regions Fund,” Minister Nash said.
“I aim to build the kinds of communities our children and grandchildren either want to stay in or come back to, and providing modern essential services are a big part of that.”
Northern based Government Senator Ian Macdonald said the project was an important investment for the future of Mareeba and the wider Atherton Tableland region.
“The project will not only save money for the community through a reduction in environmental penalties, it will also save Mareeba Shire Council hundreds of thousands of dollars a year on operating costs,” Senator Macdonald said.
State Development Minister Dr Anthony Lynham, who was on a trade mission to Canada and unable to attend the official opening, said the upgrade had generated an estimated 45 jobs during construction Mareeba.
“This is the kind of infrastructure that this government’s Building our Regions program is all about,” he said.
“Our $1.5 million contribution has helped create jobs, provide critical infrastructure and improve liveability in and around Mareeba.”
Dr Lynham said under Building our Regions, the Mareeba area has benefitted from a total of $2.88 million for four projects generating more than 50 jobs, ranging from water and sewerage infrastructure to a causeway to improve flood resilience.
The Upgrade of the Wastewater Treatment Plant in Mareeba was jointly funded by the Australian Government ($6 million), Queensland Government ($1.5 million), and Mareeba Shire Council (over $7.5 million).