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Work progressing at Hervey Bay aviation precinct

7 August 2019

Civil construction works at a new Hervey Bay aviation precinct that will pave the way for the development of a new high-tech aircraft manufacturing facility are due to be finished within a month.

Fraser Coast Mayor George Seymour said the establishment of aeronautical manufacturing would help boost the region’s economic and manufacturing base by bringing additional high tech industries to the Fraser Coast.

“The Fraser Coast Regional Council is determined to ensure our region has a strong, diversified and resilient economy, and the development of this aviation precinct is an important part of that vision,” he said.

“We are working with Astro Aero as the foundation investment at the Avion Aviation Industry precinct, which will be a catalyst for even more new, innovative, job-creating advanced manufacturing businesses in the region.

“Council executed a land sale contract with Red Diamond Pty Ltd, the parent company of Astro Aero, earlier this year with the handover of the blocks to occur shortly.

“Shadforth Civil Pty Ltd started civil construction works on 27 May, which has included storm water drainage, kerb and channelling, sewer and water supply, road surfacing and bulk earth works. 

“While there have been some unseasonal winter rain delays, the civil works are expected to be completed by the end of August or early September.”

Shadforth Project Manager James Harris said the company was delivering the project with a key contingent of dedicated local suppliers and sub-contractors.

“Shadforth has had great support from Hervey Bay based business with up to 40 local people working on site each day, which represents about two thirds of the workforce,” he said.

“These people are from businesses such as electrical contractors, a sealing and asphalt supplier, haulage contractors, labours/operators, turf supply, and kerb and channel trades, who are all successfully undertaking the work in a timely manner. 

“In addition, 60,000 tonnes of quarry materials have been sourced from local quarry suppliers.

“With the continued commitment from local suppliers and the local labour force over the next few weeks, Shadforth are certain to deliver this key piece of infrastructure on time for the Fraser Coast region.”

Federal Member for Hinkler Keith Pitt said the Australian Government has invested $9.19 million towards the project through the Building Better Regions Fund: Infrastructure Projects Stream.

“This important redevelopment at Hervey Bay Airport is part of the $173 million Hinkler Regional Deal which is a game-changer for this electorate,” Mr Pitt said.

“We need long term, sustainable jobs now and into the future and the project is expected to bring more than 500 jobs into the local economy, so it’s great to see the first stage of works at the airport nearing completion.”

Astro Aero will be the first resident at the precinct, with their proposed manufacturing facility expected to generate more than $16 million in direct annual wages and salaries once in production.

The facility will produce an innovative aircraft specifically to target freight movements in regional and remote locations.

In addition to developing the Avion Aviation Industry precinct, Council will also be renewing the Hervey Bay Airport runway in 2019/20.