Replacing bridges costs $20m
THE FRASER Coast’s 43 timber and concrete bridges will cost more than $20 million to replace and some of them are in urgent need of replacement or upgrade.
“There are too many bridges here for the amount of money we’ve got,” councillor Gerard O’Connell said at this week’s council meeting in Hervey Bay.
“We have to make some more formal representations to state and federal governments to help us fund bridge replacements.
“We met with Local Government Minister Desley Boyle recently but nothing concrete came out of that.”
Cr O’Connell earlier told the Chronicle he was worried about how the council was going to pay for those bridges needing replacement or urgent repairs when “the pie is only so big”.
“I’d rather see what money we do have go to bridges and roads rather than football fields even though I like football,” he said.
“We’ve got to launch an ongoing campaign that lobbies strongly across state and federal spheres or people’s livelihoods will go under and safety will be a major issue.”
Infrastructure and environment director Wayne Sweeney said 28 bridges had been inspected since last December and four had been so far identified for upgrading or replacement.
A $1.3 million replacement project on the 18 Mile Creek bridge at Yerra begins in September.
Kunst bridge will be upgraded at a cost of $200,000 and Jumpo Creek bridge will be replaced with a culvert configuration for $700,000.
Howard’s Maria Creek bridge and the concrete bridge over the Burrum will be put up for special funding from the Roads Alliance Regional Safety and Development program.
Mr Sweeney said notification of funding is expected to come through next month but meanwhile survey and design work on Maria Creek has begun.
BRIDGING THE GAP
$1.3m replacement of 18 Mile Creek bridge in Yerra starting this month
$200,000 upgrade of Kunst Bridge
$700,000 replacement of Jumpo Creek bridge with a culvert configuration