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Dungog Shire replacement bridge officially opens

The Fixing Country Bridges program is improving access for heavy vehicles across regional New South Wales.

The New South Wales Government has welcomed the official opening of a new $1 million bridge in the Dungog Shire.

The project is part of the $19 million bridge replacement program that is aiming to replace 23 old timber bridges with new concrete ones, improving safety and access in regional areas.

“We can now see the tangible benefits of the NSW Government’s $19 million dollar Fixing Country Bridges investment in the Dungog Shire,” said Minister for Regional Transport and Roads, Sam Farraway.

“Bridges play a critical role in the economic and social wellbeing of a community. Better bridges mean improved access to schools, towns, hospitals and jobs and productivity benefits for farmers and freight transporters.”

Fixing Country Bridges is a $500 million NSW Government program that helps councils replace ageing timber structures with concrete bridges that can better withstand extreme weather events and can be used by larger vehicles.

Mayor of Dungog Shire Council, John Connors, thanked the NSW Government for the funding.

“We are working hard to keep Dungog connected following the destructive floods earlier this year. There’s never been a more important time to invest in the resilience of Dungog’s transport connections,” said Connors.

The new Archinals Bridge on Allyn Creek Road near Eccleston replaces a timber bridge which was built in 1940 for £2000 and was named after the Archinal family, whose land surrounded the original bridge.

Long-time Dungog Shire resident, Ruby Lawrence (nee Archinal), was at the original bridge opening and said she was delighted to see the new $1.07 million upgraded version.

“I was invited to cut the ribbon at the original opening as I was in attendance with my family. As a little girl it was quite an experience,” said Lawrence.

“Before the timber bridge was built, we would have to cross on foot, which was not ideal in the wet weather.”

The original project in 1940 was part of an initiative to bridge the 10 river crossings between Gresford and the Upper Allyn, with the aim to provide all weather roads for its residents.

Today, the Dungog Shire’s 23 bridge replacements under the Fixing Country Bridges program will ensure better and more resilient road access for farmers, freight, local residents and tourists.

Five of the 23 bridges in Dungog Shire are open to traffic and two are currently under construction. The remaining sixteen bridges are in the planning and design phases.

The council is anticipating it will complete all 23 bridges by 2024, weather permitting.

In other news, a major truck wash on the Kamilaroi Highway capable of accommodating vehicles as large as road trains and B-triples has officially re-opened.

The post Dungog Shire replacement bridge officially opens appeared first on Trailer Magazine.

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