New bridge provides vital access for locals
A NEW $450,000 bridge providing access in and out of Crossmaglen has now opened.
Deputy Prime Minister Michael McCormack joined Federal MP Luke Hartsuyker and mayor Denise Knight in Coffs Harbour today to officially open the new Bardens Bridge.
The two-lane concrete bridge, which connects Crossmaglen to Bonville, replaces the old timber structure which due to deterioration could only carry trucks with a weight below 30 tonnes.
The project, which began construction in March this year, was jointly funded through the Federal Government's Bridges Renewal Program committing $225,000, and Coffs Harbour City Council also contributing the same.
Students from the nearby Crossmaglen Public School were given the honour to help move the barricades and officially open the bridge.
Mayor Denise Knight said she was pleased to see a vital piece of infrastructure renewed for the generations to come.
"Bardens Bridge is not on one of the busiest roads in the Coffs Harbour local government area, but it is an important link for locals and businesses in the Crossmaglen Valley," Cr Knight said.
"It's a great thing now to have this bridge and we hope to have some more. We have a program called Bridges Without Borders which we work hard on, and it isn't just about our LGA, we work with all our neighbours."
Deputy Prime Minister Michael McCormack said the Bardens Bridge project was an example of how local communities 'continue to benefit' from the Government's Bridges Renewal Program.
"The old timber structure has now been replaced with a superior single span, two-lane concrete bridge in a big win for the local community," Mr McCormack said.
"I know how important and special this bridge is to you. While Coffs Harbour is of course important, it's these little communities which make bigger communities work."
Federal MP Luke Hartsuyker said the bridge plays a great role in connectivity for the area.
"It's a small bridge but it's an important bridge for the community," he said.
"It's really important we have connectivity. One of the challenges you have in rural areas in the councils have a lot of timber bridges, and they don't last forever."
The demolition and construction works were undertaken by the Coffs Harbour City Council's coastal works business unit.