New South Wales, News, Road upgrades

Replacement of historic bridge paves the way for higher mass limits

A historic timber bridge near Dubbo that was built in 1916 is set to be replaced by a new concrete structure, opening up access to heavy vehicles with higher mass limits.

Located in western NSW, 21 kilometres west of Dubbo, the Rawsonville Bridge sits over the Macquarie River.

The new Rawsonville Bridge is expected to cost an estimated $18.9 million. Initial estimates sat at $12.5 million, however the NSW government announced it would invest an extra $6.4 million so the job could be completed.

Once finished, the new bridge is set to offer major improvements to heavy vehicle access, freight connectivity and road safety.

Minister for Regional Transport and Roads Jenny Aitchison said: “Once completed, the new Rawsonville Bridge will deliver safer and smoother journeys for road users through wider lanes and better road approaches, increased load capacity for heavy vehicles, improved access for wide vehicles and reduced road closures.”

According to the NSW government, new bridge will also help to unlock more opportunities for economic growth in the Dubbo region while reducing travel times.

Preliminary earthworks to construct the new approach embankments for the future bridge began this week and should take about 10 weeks to complete – after which bridge construction tenders will be sought later in the year.

The preliminary earthworks will mean some changed traffic conditions will be in place. Work hours will be 7am to 6pm Monday to Saturday, weather permitting.

Traffic control and a reduced speed limit of 80 km/h will be in place during work hours on the Mitchell Highway at the intersection with the Rawsonville Bridge Road.

The speed limit on Rawsonville Bridge Road will be reduced to 40 km/h during work hours and 80 km/h outside of work hours.

Intermittent single lane closures may be required on Rawsonville Bridge Road throughout the earthworks.

In addition, traffic control and a reduced speed limit of 80 km/h will be in place on the Mitchell Highway at the intersection with Burrabadine Road during haulage of material from the stockpile at this site that will be used in the work.

Dubbo Duty MLC Stephen Lawrence added, “Used by local traffic, tourists and vital regional freight operators, Rawsonville Bridge is an important crossing of the Macquarie River that links the Mitchell Highway to the Dubbo-Burraway Road and the Newell Highway between the towns of Dubbo and Narromine.

“When the existing bridge is closed for maintenance, motorists are faced with a 45-kilometre detour to travel from one side of the river to the other. A new bridge will put an end to that frustrating inconvenience.

“We appreciate the patience of all motorists as preliminary work gets underway on this important addition to western NSW’s roads infrastructure.”

1 Comment

  1. A faster version of bridge building and far cheaper would be for the Army to construct steel Bailey Bridges over all those rivers that need their bridges replaced .They are obtainable from Newcastle NSW and they will accommodate 2 lane traffic and because they are demountable ,they can be erected in a few weeks

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