Community & Business

22 November, 2023

Locals share thoughts on bridge options

FEEDBACK on two options for the future of the Barron River bridge at Kuranda has been coming thick and fast, with many locals commenting that fixing the bridge is not going to fix the issues with commuting to the coast.

Locals share thoughts on bridge options - feature photo

Member for Barron River Craig Crawford shared the Department of Transport and Main Roads consultation Facebook post on two options for the bridge – fix it or replace it – and has been getting strong feedback from those who use it most.

Locals are being asked whether they would like a major upgrade of the existing bridge or a completely new structure that would be built downstream of the current bridge, with consultation ending on 8 December.

“Why would you remove a perfectly serviceable bridge. Demolition costs a bomb and should be considered after the useable life of the bridge is expended,” David Montgomery asked.

Ryan Davidson reckons he has the answer and was supported by others: “Build a new bridge then repair the old bridge. By the time that is done, we will need four lanes and it will stop further congestion down the track.”

“A new bridge is a no brainer. However, upgrade old bridge for a four-lane highway later,” Doug Robertson wrote.

I don’t understand the waste of removing the old bridge - surely it can be used to make more lanes,” Simon Clover posted.

But many respondents said the Kuranda Range Road remained as a problem in the transport network.

“I hope some thought has been put into widening the Kuranda Range so it is safer for heavy vehicles to travel up and down,” Michael Wright said.

“Another stupid Band-Aid solution, future proof it with a tunnel,” Bradley Lukosius posted.

Dave Stevenson agreed.

“How about the tunnel from Caravonica to Kuranda. It will cut 15 minutes of driving time and alleviate problems of congestion when accidents occur,” he posted.

Bill Hardy believes there has been no “true forward planning” in providing an alternative to the Kuranda Range road.

“The number of closures/delays/one lane access is incredible, given the importance of the need for reliable and safe corridor to Cairns,” he wrote.

“My feedback will be that true future planning has not been considered. Saying we need to choose option 1 or option 2 for the bridge is a planned exercise in political ‘avoiding the issue’ ... waiting for a change of government so this current government can blame someone else for the problem they left, covering up their incapacity to really plan for the future.”

Robert Blanckensee wants to see costings before he chooses an option for the bridge.

“Sorry, but where are the costs of each of the options?” he wrote.

“A cost benefit analysis (CBA) needs to be considered as if the public's preferred option is ruled out because it is the more expensive how we would know. With a CBA the public would be able to determine the best use of their funds.”

To give your feedback on the options for the bridge, go to before 8 December.


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