BENDIGO Airport would still have a role to play in regional travel even if regional fast rail cuts travel times to Melbourne to 70 minutes and a rail link to Melbourne Airport is established, Deputy Prime Minister Michael McCormack believes.
Mr McCormack, federal Nationals leader, landed at Bendigo Airport on Thursday where he had brief discussions with the airport manager and maintenance staff about $4.4 million plans to upgrade the terminal.
The Victorian Coalition has since promised regional fast rail as part of its pre-election pitch.
Mr McCormack said the Bendigo Airport project would still be considered for future funding.
“Let’s not replace good airport infrastructure with just rail or just road,” he said.
“We need to be able to invest in the infrastructure for all types of transport services be it rail, be it road, be it airport infrastructure, they’re the sorts of things that I want to invest in and build upon.
“I realise that they’ve got a vision and a plan in place to build and enhance and refurbish.”
Mr McCormack met with Bendigo mayor Margaret O’Rourke and Campaspe Shire councillors during his visit to Bendigo, where he also launched the campaign for Nationals candidate for Bendigo East Gaelle Broad.
He said he would discuss the Building Better Regions fund with Cr O’Rourke, with $200 million in grants up for grabs, $45 million of which would be provided to tourism projects.
The Bendigo Airport project includes a passenger arrival terminal, baggage pick up, check-in counters, retail opportunities and departure lounge.
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