Road set to open Kemerton industrial land

Stuart McGuckinSouth Western Times
Landcorp chief executive Frank Marra, Collie-Preston MLA Mick Murray, Premier Mark McGowan and Bunbury MLA Don Punch are pleased work is has started on the road.
Camera IconLandcorp chief executive Frank Marra, Collie-Preston MLA Mick Murray, Premier Mark McGowan and Bunbury MLA Don Punch are pleased work is has started on the road. Credit: Stuart McGuckin

Construction has started on a $5 million stretch of road which is set to unlock 350ha of land in the Kemerton Industrial Park.

Premier Mark McGowan was joined by Landcorp and Industrial Lands Authority chief executive Frank Marra, Bunbury MLA Don Punch and Collie Preston MLA to turn the first sod on Thursday.

The 2.5km road will link Marriot and Wellesley roads just south of where the Albemarle lithium processing plant is under construction.

Mr McGowan said the road was expected to be completed by September and had the potential to unlock thousands of jobs in the future.

“This land hasn’t been accessible or usable before,” he said.

“This estate has been here for many decades but it is really hitting its stride now because this Government is seeking investment and providing the support to unlock the land. This road will support Albemarle’s development while opening the park up for many other users as well.”

He said only a handful of businesses had set up at Kemerton since it was set aside in the 1980s.

“Now that we have started on a monster project (Albemarle) we want that to kick-start further projects in the area,” he said.

“We’ll continue to promote the area and tell people about the advantages of setting up in Western Australia.

“Getting a major project here is a big step because often you see that other projects will come in on the back of that.”

Mr Marra said the Industrial Lands Authority worked closely with the Department of Jobs to provide a front door to WA for big companies that wanted to invest in industries.

“There are a range of companies coming all the time to look at all those projects,” he said.

“Kemerton fits within that network and there are lots of initiatives to bring those companies to the State.”

Building the road was a commitment made by Labor during the 2017 election campaign.

Mr Punch said the sod-turning was a proud day for him as Bunbury MLA.

“This is about jobs – jobs for the South West and jobs for people and small businesses in my community,” he said.

“I know there are engineering companies and other support services that all combining to support these projects.

“The focus has been on jobs in the South West for too long because we’ve had problems in terms of local employment.

“This will deliver more local jobs.”

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