New bridge to better connect Awaba
11 February 2021
An ageing timber bridge at Awaba will be replaced under the NSW Government’s $500 million Fixing Country Bridges program to better connect regional communities and increase resilience to natural disasters.
Deputy Premier John Barilaro said the NSW Government was delivering on its election commitment to replace old timber bridges with safer, modern structures that will better withstand events like floods and bushfires, easing the burden of maintenance for local councils and ratepayers and building a safer, stronger regional NSW.
“Last year was one of the most challenging years regional communities have faced due to COVID-19, summer bushfires and drought – and that’s before heavy rains hit some areas,” Mr Barilaro said.
“I’m thrilled to see these bridge projects get underway - it’s an election commitment we promised and are delivering on. The bridge projects will help create new jobs, drive economic growth and deliver lifestyle improvements for generations to come.”
Minister for Regional Transport and Roads Paul Toole said the NSW Government had accelerated funding for the program with more than $290 million shared across 54 councils to replace 424 bridges in round one.
“That’s hundreds of fast-tracked projects that will start across the state in the next 12 months, helping councils to create and support jobs, drive productivity and keep our regional communities connected,” Mr Toole said.
“This unprecedented funding commitment to replace NSW’s worst timber bridges builds on the $500 million we’re investing through Fixing Local Roads to deliver better journeys on the roads our regional communities use every day. Together this $1 billion investment will ensure a safe, modern and stronger road and bridge network for the bush that will serve generations to come.”
Member for Lake Macquarie Greg Piper said $1.7 million from the NSW Government would be invested in replacing a two-lane, 15-metre-long timber bridge on Wilton Road, Awaba, about 1.5 kilometres south-west of the Cessnock and Wilton roads’ intersection.
“Replacing this old timber bridge means improved community connections to schools, towns and jobs, allowing easier movement of freight and delivering better outcomes for road safety,” Mr Piper said.
“On top of easing the financial burden on the local council, this program will create local jobs at a time when they’re needed most.
“There has been a number of head-on crashes on the northern approach to this bridge, so replacing it with a wider structure using the available road reserve will deliver safer journeys for all motorists.”
Successful applications are timber bridges, located on a council-managed road which are not a heritage or truss bridge and are a priority asset to council. A second round of the program will be offered later this year.
For more information on the Fixing Country Bridges program, visit nswroads.work/fixingcountrybridges