PROGRESS on the $352 million Rookwood Weir gathered more momentum late last week with the State Government opening tenders for a necessary road upgrade project.
State MP for Rockhampton, Barry O'Rourke, said the tender for the Capricorn Highway intersection upgrade at Gogango would remain open until November 7.
It is understood the tender could be awarded by late December with construction due to begin in 2020.
"The roadwork will provide safe access for earth-moving machinery and construction vehicles travelling to the weir site,'' Mr O'Rourke said.
Member for Keppel Brittany Lauga wants Central Queensland companies to bid for the work, which she says could create up to 20 jobs.
"The weir will boost water security to Livingstone Shire, Rockhampton and Gladstone and help grow and diversify the region's economy through irrigated agriculture," Ms Lauga said.
"The successful candidate for the Gogango upgrade will be required to leverage local relationships and provide job opportunities for the community.
"The contractor will need to display a proven capacity to efficiently and effectively deliver projects of this type and size in the region."
Bids to construct the weir opened on October 2 and almost 100 CQ businesses have registered their interest to supply goods and services.
But a proposal by the State Government to amend the project to curtail costs is causing unease. Originally, the weir was to store 76,000 megalitres with the water available to landowners and as a back-up water supply for the Rockhampton, Yeppoon and Gladstone regions.
Earlier this year, the State Natural Resources Minister Anthony Lynham said the construction cost would exceed the initial budget, blaming the blowout on the rising price of concrete.
He later said the weir could be downsized to store 54,000 megalitres to stay on budget.
Residents have joined farmers and politicians demanding the "real Rookwood Weir" be built and Federal LNP Member for Capricornia Michelle Landry added: "It's simply not good enough."
Earlier this month the LNP's Senator for Queensland Matt Canavan was quoted in a media report saying around 30,000 megalitres of the weir's water would be reserved for the future growth of Gladstone and about 20,000 megalitres reserved for future growth in Rockhampton and Yeppoon.
"You can do the numbers - if you take 20,000 megs off that 76,000, you're not left with any long-term necessarily for agriculture," Senator Canavan said.