29 June 2017 - Media release
Assessments have now been completed on the Fox Island Road bridge, Gunbower, confirming the need to retain the weight and speed limits, and identifying short, medium and long term options.
Campaspe Shire Mayor, Cr Adrian Weston said monthly inspections have been conducted since the limits were put in place in February to identify any changes to the structure. Design options have also been completed to estimate funding required for temporary works and full bridge replacement.
“The 2-tonne weight limit and 40km per hour speed limit will remain on the bridge,” Cr Weston said.
Council is working with the Department of Environment, Land, Water and Planning (DELWP) to upgrade a nearby existing track, known as Lovers Lane, to provide an alternative access to north of Fox Island Road.
“The upgrade of this lane will allow a 9-tonne limit to use this alternate route in the interim. Larger vehicles and trucks however will be required to continue to detour the area,” Cr Weston said.
“Temporary works are being considered to increase the Fox Island Road bridge weight limit to 12-tonne, retaining the 40km per hour speed limit.”
The long term option is to replace the bridge at a cost of $1.6 million. Traffic counts indicate the bridge has a considerable level of use and council believes bridge replacement works would qualify for Federal funding through the Bridge Renewal Funding Program.
“Accordingly a funding application has been submitted for the bridge’s replacement. However until a new bridge is in place, heavy vehicles, school buses and trucks will be required to detour the area,” Cr Weston said.
Letters have recently gone out to local residents, emergency services, truck companies and schools providing an update on this project.
“Detours continue to be in place for all vehicles exceeding the 2-tonne weight limit and drivers are urged to observe these restrictions,” Cr Weston said.
A report will be presented to the July council meeting outlining options for the bridge.