Karangi residents fight for road

OLD Upper Orara Road’s northern end has found itself the Cinderella of rural roads at Karangi.

Once the main road servicing the busy country community, road realignment many years ago saw it move from being a main thoroughfare to a quiet country road, which occasionally received attention from council road crews.

It has now found itself completely dropped from the list of roads maintained by Coffs Harbour City Council.

The only difficulty is that four families still rely for access on this end of the public road, which has deteriorated into a rutted, muddy, dusty and tussocky track.

Heavy rain has gouged deep dips into the road and a collapsed bridge means cars have to splash through the water to get out. Residents say the northern exit on to Upper Orara Road is also dangerous.

A spokeswoman for council said the authority had sealed about half the length of the road in 2006, but in 2007 had resolved not to maintain any of the unmaintained roads on the city’s unmaintained roads asset register, which included the less-frequented end of this road.

Residents say when the road was bypassed many years ago, the then shire council promised to maintain the old road and continued to carry out regular repairs until 15 years ago, when the maintenance schedule deteriorated.

But they said as late as 2006, council staff wrote to residents promising to monitor the situation ‘and periodically carry out repairs as required’, and they are upset that this has now been revoked

Sandy Casson said the access into this part of the road was also in bad shape, with heavy rain gouging out lay and making a dangerous dip in the entrance for turning.

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