Hinchinbrook MP, Andrew Cripps, has announced that a re-elected LNP Government will fast-track detailed design work on a replacement for the vital Arnot Creek Bridge on the Bruce Highway, north of Ingham.
Mr Cripps said the Department of Transport and Main Roads (DTMR) had prepared a business case to replace the bridge, estimated to cost approximately $10 million and submitted it to the Commonwealth Government for consideration.
“With the Bruce Highway being the National Highway, a submission to jointly fund the new bridge is in the process of being finalised with the Federal Government which, if approved, could see construction begin this year,” Mr Cripps said.
“This will be a great relief for locals and visitors to North Queensland after the speed limit on the bridge was reduced to 60 km/h, causing unintended delays, due to structural issues associated with the bridge over Arnot Creek.
“As a result I’ve pushed hard to have $1 million released to complete a detailed study and design work for a new bridge as soon as possible and I have been successful in securing this funding from DTMR”.
As an interim measure to provide some relief for motorists, Mr Cripps said DTMR intended to trial a differential speed limit of 60 km/h for trucks and heavy vehicles over 20 tonnes and 80 km/h for passenger vehicles and other vehicles under 20 tonnes.
“Continuing the 60 km/h speed limit for heavy vehicles will protect the bridge but allow the flow of traffic to improve for lighter vehicles,” he said.
“This changed approach will be supported by new signage to be installed in the near future and I’m hopeful of a response from the Commonwealth Government in the near future.”