Frequently asked questions

Tooleybuc Bridge temporary closure

  • Transport for NSW is planning to carry out essential maintenance work to Tooleybuc Bridge. We are doing this work to ensure this structure remains safe and continues to serve the community.

  • Work will include the installation of steel tubular piles and trestles at piers three, four and five, and ajacent to Victorian abutment to ensure the current level of service the bridge provides is maintained.

    Following the call for feedback in June, we heard the majority of the community preferred to put the steel support frame (Bailey) replacement on hold for up to 12 months while we monitor the bridge, unless urgently required. The Bailey work may require some form of full bridge closure of up to four weeks in the future however, we are currently investigating ways to minimise impacts of this work on the community.

  • We will be setting up the site from Monday 18 July, with no impacts to transport customers. To carry out the work safely and to complete the repairs as quickly as possible, major work will be carried out from Sunday 24 July, between 4.30pm and midnight Sunday to Thursday nights. This will allow the project to be completed within Term 3 of the school year to ensure no impacts to holiday travellers. We will be working as quickly as possible and expect to complete work in six weeks, weather permitting.

  • From Friday 3 June to Monday 20 June, we called for community feedback into four options to carry out this maintenance. Submissions could be logged via our online feedback tool, email, phone and post. A drop-in session was also held on Thursday 9 June to answer questions and help community members have their say.

    About 60 per cent of the community preferred shift closures compared to 32 per cent preferring a full bridge closure.

    We considered all votes and comments and believe a few tweaks to Option 1 balances project duration and impacts. We thank the community for having their say and sharing their thoughts, concerns and further background.

  • Installing the steel tubular piles and steel underbridge supports involves the use of heavy machinery which generates short periods of noise, which can be very disruptive. Every effort will be made to minimise noise for nearby residents. The noisiest work will completed by 10pm each night, however general construction noise, such as machinery, generators, hand tools, will continue through until midnight.

  • We acknowledge the community’s calls for a temporary bridge to limit construction impacts. Building a temporary bridge does not happen overnight and requires the same degree of planning and approvals as any other structure, including environmental, geotechnical and heritage. While this is an efficient way to minimise impacts on long-term projects, it can take more than a year to plan and several months to launch the bridge, adding millions of taxpayer dollars to the project cost. This type of bridge is not a quick solution.

  • Yes, two alternative routes for both light and heavy vehicles will be in place during the closures.

    Light and heavy vehicles will be detoured via Nyah Bridge, accessed via Stony Crossing Road and Speewa Road, adding an extra 30 minutes to journeys. Heavy vehicles should note Nyah Bridge has a vertical height restriction of 4.1 metres.

    For vehicles over 4.1 metres in height, Swan Hill Bridge, accessed via Stony Crossing Road and Swan Hill Road, should be used, adding an extra hour to journeys.

  • Pedestrians will not be able to cross the bridge between 4.30pm and midnight, Sunday to Thursday, while the bridge is closed. The bridge will be open to all transport customers at all other times.

  • Transport carries out regular bridge inspections to ensure each structure remains safe andfit-for-purpose. The condition of Tooleybuc Bridge’s piers was highlighted following one of these recent inspections. We understand the community’s view that this work should have been carried out during the 2020 border closures, however this work had not been identified or anticipated at that time. In addition, at the time of the border closures, communities. Lastly, if we had been able to anticipate this work, Transport would not have been aware of how long the border closures would last.

  • During the feedback period, we heard school students and buses were a key priority for the community. The maintenance program has been designed to ensure school students and buses are not impacted in any way.

  • The Murray River main channel and lift span will remain open during the project. River guidance devices will be in place to guide maritime vessels safely through the waterway.

  • No. We are working with Australia Post to ensure mail gets across the river.

  • In 2019, the NSW Government's Timber Truss Road Bridges - A Strategic Approach to Conservation was reviewed after considerable work to better understand the structural capabilities of the various timber bridge types and the strengthening methods available.

    The review found Tooleybuc Bridge, was one of eight bridges across the state considered to be good examples of its Allan timber truss type with the ability to be upgraded to service the future road network. As a result, the review recommended Tooleybuc Bridge should be retained.

    Transport is now investigating opportunities to strengthen the current bridge to allow trucks carrying heavier loads to cross the river without damaging the structure.

  • As detailed in the reviewed Timber Truss Strategy, Tooleybuc Bridge is planned to be retained. Plans for a new bridge were put on hold and focus was shifted to strengthening and restoring the existing bridge to retain its heritage significance while catering for modern traffic requirements.

    Transport is now investigating opportunities to strengthen the current bridge to allow trucks carrying heavier loads to cross the river without damaging the structure.

  • Tooleybuc Bridge is State Heritage-listed and will be retained under the 2019 Timber Truss Bridge Conservation Strategy. For more information on the strategy, see Timber truss bridges.

  • Yes, the bridge is safe and serviceable in its current condition in the short-term. However, the current proposed work and future maintenance is essential to ensure it continues to be an important link for communities and freight across the Murray River. Following feedback confirming the majority of the community preferred to delay Bailey support structure replacement, a range of monitoring equipment will be installed on the bridge to ensure the Baileys remain safe. There is a chance that load limits or emergency work will need to be carried out under a bridge closure if this monitoring equipment shows any signs of stress.

  • We will keep the community updated on traffic impacts and work hours through notification letters, social media posts, onsite electronic signage, website and via the media. We will let you know in advance of any changes to this work so you can plan your journeys.

  • For more information, contact the Tooleybuc Bridge maintenance project team on 1300 679 842, murrayrivercrossing@transport.nsw.gov.au or mail PO Box 484 Wagga Wagga NSW 2650.

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