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Mud slips take toll on the Gap

Lawrence Springborg (Southern Downs) Mayor John Brent, Main Roads Minister Scott Emerson and John Krause (Beaudesert).
Lawrence Springborg (Southern Downs) Mayor John Brent, Main Roads Minister Scott Emerson and John Krause (Beaudesert). Georja Ryan

THE highway through Cunningham's Gap may have held up through the major downpour at the weekend, but the land around it wasn't so lucky.

Main Roads Minister Scott Emerson visited the Gap this week to inspect the damage caused by landslides that saw masses of dirt, rocks and debris cover the roadway.

While he could not provide a monetary figure on just how much repairs would cost or how long it would take, Mr Emerson said fixing the unstable land was a high priority.

"If we see the good news here, it's that the work done in 2011 has held up," Mr Emerson said.

"But there is still a lot of work to be done."

He said he was liaising with local mayors and members as to what exactly needed to be done, and wanted to see work underway as soon as possible.

"Last time there were delays so this time I want to get contracts underway as soon as we can," he said.

Being a federal road, Mr Emerson said he would need to seek federal funding to complete the project.

"We want to make sure we build resilience," he said.

Member for Southern Downs Lawrence Springborg agreed with the minister and said he was glad to see the $57m spent on repairing the roads last year, was worth it.

"The road surface stayed up exceptionally well and the real problem here is the mud sliding, not the roads," Mr Springborg said.

"Within a couple of days, the roads are back open; that's proven our investment has been worthwhile."

Topics:  cunningham's gap, flood damage, lawrence springborg, scott emerson




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