Port Lincoln council to call for government plan

Port Lincoln City Council will call on the South Australian Government to provide planned actions in response to recommendations from the Eyre Peninsula Freight Study.

The council will request an urgent response and proposed actions from Minister for Transport, Infrastructure and Local Government Stephan Knoll in response to the study released in early April.

This includes addressing the social and economic impact on Port Lincoln and other Eyre Peninsula communities after grain transport will transition from rail to solely road transport after May 31.

The federal government had made a commitment of $100 million to upgrade the South Australia section of the Port Augusta to Perth corridor, with $25.6 million to be allocated to upgrading roads on Lower Eyre Peninsula.

The council needs to take a strong stand

Jack Ritchie

Proposed upgrades have included overtaking lanes, road widening and shoulder sealing as well as other road safety improvements.

Councillor Jack Ritchie pushed for the council to seek a government response.

He said the report showed that $90 million would be required to compensate the impact on the community.

Mr Ritchie said there was about a month left before the rail service was gone and there was still no plan in place.

"We should contact Minister Knoll and call on him and the state government to provide a detailed commitment to the community of Port Lincoln and Eyre Peninsula community on what resources will be allocated to maintain appropriate road infrastructure," Mr Ritchie said.

"The council needs to take a strong stand."

The council had expressed concern about the impact increased truck traffic would have on roads including Western Approach Road and Mortlock Terrace.

The council's chief executive officer Stephen Rufus said the council needed to have a position to put to the government on what was needed for the city, which became the negotiation point and part of the council's master plan.

Port Lincoln mayor Brad Flaherty said the asset had deteriorated to the point that it was barely usable so it would be unlikely that a new customer would use the rail way line.