Ballina airport $7.3m upgrade

BALLINA Airport is about to get an upgrade.

The NSW Government's Local Infrastructure Renewal Scheme has given Ballina Shire Council a $7.3 million loan subsidy for a major overhaul and strengthening of the runway.

Member for Ballina Don Page said the Ballina-Byron region deserved a world-class airport, as it was one of the nation's premier tourist destinations.

"The airport is also a vital hub for the Northern Rivers region with over 350,000 passengers passing through each year. That figure that is expected to rise to around 500,000 over the next five years," Mr Page said.

Other projects covered by the scheme include roads, bridges, community halls, libraries, paths, parks, water facilities and airports.

The scheme is expected to give the green light to up to $1 billion worth of infrastructure across the state.

"There is still $60 million to fund other projects across the State in future rounds of grants," Mr Page said.

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