Mortlake’s economy is buzzing with the town enjoying many spin-offs from the construction of the Western Victoria Livestock Exchange and the Salt Creek wind farm.
Hospitality places in the town are reporting good business not only from out-of-town workers but also from many of the locals workers employed on the projects.
Macs Hotel in Mortlake’s main street said its seven recently renovated accommodation rooms were full on Monday night with workers from the Salt Creek wind farm.
Licensee Jodie Beeck said the bookings were not long-term but she expected the project would generate a lot more business, with some of the workers coming from as far away as Townsville.
Ms Beeck said many of the workers building the new saleyards ate and drank at the hotel.
The Mortlake Roadhouse said workers on the new saleyards had significantly boosted its business, buying takeaway lunches and morning teas.
Western Victoria Livestock Exchange director Rohan Arnold said locals comprised the bulk of the 65 workers on the site, with only about 20 coming from out the area.
Mr Arnold said those from out of the area were renting in Mortlake and in Warrnmabool.
He said the project had made a deliberate decision to seek local people for the project and had found a local of local labour available.
Mr Arnold said the new saleyards was estimated to turn over about $200 million in its first year and would have many positive flow on effects to businesses such as livestock carriers and tyre retailers.
The saleyards is scheduled to be completed by December 20 and employ six people full-time and 20 casuals.
The wind down in construction on the saleyards will occur as work starts to ramp up on the 15-turbine Salt Creek wind farm at Woorndoo, north of Mortlake.
The wind farm is expected to provide 100 full-time jobs and four permanent jobs and be completed by July, next year.
Mortlake Community Development Committee president Keith Peart said there was a positive mood in the town with people particularly excited about the saleyards being built.
Moyne Cr Jill Parker said the big component of local workers on the saleyards and wind farm projects had given the town a definite boost and people were optimistic about its future economy.
She said a number of houses had recently sold in Mortlake after a shorter than usual time on the market, another indication of the pick up in economic activity.