Plans for new Lachlan River Bridge to boost freight

14 May 2021

Plans to replace the 95-year-old timber Paytens Bridge with a new concrete structure to deliver more reliable journeys over the Lachlan River and reduce ongoing maintenance costs are moving ahead.

Minister for Regional Transport and Roads Paul Toole said the NSW Government was delivering on its $2.3 million commitment to develop a replacement bridge, with preliminary survey and geotech investigation work carried out in April.

“The ageing 10-span, 128-metre-long bridge, located about 11 kilometres south west of Eugowra, has a low load capacity and narrow deck width, making it difficult for heavy vehicles operators to deliver supplies to and from farms in the area,” Mr Toole said.

“The current bridge is the only crossing of the Lachlan River between Forbes and Gooloogong, and when it needs to be closed for maintenance, drivers are faced with a 48-kilometre detour.

“We’ll replace it with a new longer-lasting concrete bridge with increased load capacity, wider lanes and improved road approaches. This will deliver a safer, more efficient and reliable crossing for years to come.”

Member of the Legislative Council Sam Farraway said building a new bridge would also reduce the ongoing maintenance costs and disruptions to traffic during the regular maintenance required to keep the existing bridge serviceable.

“The NSW Government is investing an initial $250,000 this financial year for design and investigation work to determine the best location for the new concrete bridge crossing,” Mr Farraway said.

“Transport for NSW is working on a strategic concept design for the new Paytens Bridge that will ensure this is a ‘shovel ready’ project when construction funding is secured. We will keep the local community informed as planning work progresses.

“The existing bridge will continue to be maintained by Transport for NSW until the new bridge is constructed to provide access to locals, holiday traffic and freight users on the road network.”

The bridge was on the list of NSW timber truss bridges to be preserved, but after a review of the conservation list of bridges in 2019, the bridge will be replaced with a new concrete bridge. For more information, visit Paytens Bridge replacement.

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