Bloom­field bridge de­layed

Port Douglas & Mossman Gazette - - NEWS - by PAUL MIL­TON BUT­LER

FRUS­TRATED res­i­dents who have to use the at times dan­ger­ous Bloom­field River cross­ing have been told they have to wait un­til next year be­fore the planned new bridge will be built.

Man­ager of projects and de­liv­ery, for the Depart­ment of Main Roads and Trans­port, Jim Hard­ing-Smith said that work could not be­gin as planned be­cause the new de­signs had still not been fi­nalised.

“We are still work­ing through the new de­sign plans and they should be fi­nalised by early next month,” Mr Jim Hard­ing-Smith said.

“Once the plans are com­pleted, the next stage is to put the project out to pre- qual­i­fied ten­ders and then a builder will be cho­sen to build the bridge.

“The bridge is be­ing built with state and fed­eral fund­ing and we aim to have it built next year.”

In the mean­time, Cairns Re­gional Coun­cil will continue to main­tain and re­pair the bridge should it be dam­aged in any storms or floods.

“Cairns Re­gional Coun­cil is re­spon­si­ble for the con­tin­ued work­ing or­der of the ex­ist­ing cause­way and will continue to be re­spon­si­ble for the cross­ing un­til a per­ma­nent bridge is con­structed by the Depart­ment of Trans­port and Main Roads,” act­ing gen­eral man­ager of in­fra­struc­ture ser­vices Bruce Gar­diner said.

“Coun­cil of­fi­cers in­spect the cross­ing of­ten and if dam­age is caused to the struc­ture dur­ing the up­com­ing wet sea­son, coun­cil will ar­range for any nec­es­sary re­con­struc­tion works and if the cross­ing is un­us­able for an ex­tended time­frame, a pas­sen­ger ferry will be ar­ranged.

“Due to the dis­tance to the near­est works de­pot at Moss­man, coun­cil works closely with the Wu­jal Wu­jal Abo­rig­i­nal Shire Coun­cil to en­sure gen­eral main­te­nance and run­ning re­pairs are un­der­taken to the struc­ture as re­quired.”

The de­lay has fur­ther an­gered the res­i­dents - the State Gov­ern­ment promised a new $5.5 mil­lion bridge would re­place the ex­ist­ing cross­ing by the start of the next wet sea­son.

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