Big Rig redevelopment set to bring big bucks to economy
THE Big Rig is again at the forefront of flourishing tourism in the Maranoa, expected to inject a further $3.4m in the economy annually.
Visit Roma President Charlie Eames has welcomed Council's decision to award the tender for the construction of stage 1 of the Big Rig Redevelopment, The Big Rig Tower and Tree Walk.
"The Big Rig is the premier tourism asset of our region and this expansion project is set to inject $3.4m per annum into the regional economy though visitor overnight expenditure," he said.
Visit Roma, which represents almost 100 tourism, hospitality and retail businesses across the region is in full support of Maranoa Regional Council's decision to invest in tourism.
"Tourism plays a vital role in our economy and I am so pleased to see Council's leadership and vision to enhance our tourism industry," Mr Eames said.
"Regional Councils across Western Queensland have identified how important tourism is, and it's important that Maranoa isn't left behind."
Mr Eames said at 19 years of age the Big Rig was deserving of a capital injection as it is a unique tourism drawcard that the community continues to benefit from. The redevelopment of the Big Rig will make it the major anchor tourist attraction in the region which will act as dispersal point for tourists to visit the whole of the Maranoa region.
Big Rig Information Centre Volunteer Ray Howson was delighted to hear the news the project had progressed to the next stage.
"Over my years volunteering at the Big Rig I have observed a notable increase in visitor numbers," he said.
"I understand that visitor numbers are projected to grow by another 50 per cent or so once the construction is complete - that's going to be a real shot in the arm for local businesses across our region."
Roma Commerce President Cyril Peet said that this was an exciting time for local businesses.
"If we can attract more of our visitors to stay an extra night somewhere in the Maranoa, I know that many of the businesses will reap those benefits," he said.
"We've now also got the new interpretative centre at the Roma Saleyards, so there's no excuse not to visit the Maranoa and spend a few dollars.
"I'm pleased that Council is getting on with the job."