OUR SAY: Bridges can create wealth
FOR the hundreds of drivers queuing in traffic every morning, afternoon or other random times when bridge traffic gridlock hits Grafton streets, the opening of the second bridge cannot come fast enough.
Even accounting for the bizarre way waiting in traffic slows the passage of time (a minute seems like 10) the traffic snarls must be taking a toll on the city's economy.
People are saying they make decisions on how they move around town on the likelihood of encountering a bridge-related traffic delay.
When placed correctly, bridges do much more than carry vehicles across rivers, ravines or other obstacles.
When done right, they create wealth.
Demographers have described the Sydney Harbour Bridge - opened in 1932, the same year as the original Grafton Bridge - as just a very average toll road that barely pays for itself.
But as the turning point in the development of Sydney, creating a virtual second city centre on the north side of the harbour, the bridge has paid for itself many times over.
Similar, if not quite as dramatic benefits will accrue for Grafton.
A direct link with the developing business hub in the area on the southern bridge approach will bring further and faster growth to that area.
Better connection with projected growth areas such as Clarenza will improve the liveability of those areas.
Best of all, it's just months away.