New bridge delivers greater access for road trains

New bridge in south-west Queensland capable of supporting road trains of up to 53.5m in length

July 15, 2013

A new bridge in south-west Queensland capable of supporting road trains of up to 53.5m in length has opened almost one year ahead of schedule.

The new Sir Thomas Mitchell Bridge over the Maranoa River is now complete.

Federal Minister for Infrastructure and Transport Anthony Albanese says the bridge is a critical link for the State’s south-western communities, as well as the livestock and transport industries.

"The new bridge, located a few metres downstream from the existing bridge built in the 1950s, will align with Mitchell’s main street delivering better traffic flow and safer driving conditions for motorists," Albanese says.

"While all road users will benefit, the new bridge will also allow the movement of Type 2 road trains which will deliver significant economic benefits to the local freight and livestock industries."

A Type 2 road train is classified as a prime mover towing two trailers with a maximum combination length of 47.5m or a prime mover hauling three or four trailers with a maximum combination length of 53.5m.

"The bridge is 900mm higher and over 3m wider than the old bridge, with a dedicated pedestrian crossing and lighting. This will provide safe and reliable access for pedestrians across the Maranoa River," Albanese says.

He says the $16.8 million bridge is part of upgrades to the Warrego Highway between Roma and Mitchell.

Meanwhile, the Federal Government has announced it will provide provide $1 million in funding to restore and reopen the Kirrama Range Road in the Cardwell Range.

"This investment will help restore an important link to the Tablelands, providing a boost to local tourism operators and the cattle industry and restoring access for traditional owners," Albanese says.

"Funding will go towards the replacement of 10 bridges, the resealing and replacement of gravel on sections of the road."

Albanese says the route was closed due to significant damage by Tropical Cyclone Larry.

Works are due to start in November 2013 with the full upgrade to be complete by the middle of next year.

Albanese says federal funding is conditional on the Queensland Government and the local council confirming their funding contributions and the council maintaining the road into the future.

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