The new $323.7 million Echuca-Moama Bridge project, the largest transport infrastructure project in northern Victoria and southern NSW, is set to open to traffic before the Easter holidays – months ahead of schedule.
Locals and visitors are being invited to enjoy an early viewing of the new river crossing which will connect the Murray Valley Highway in Echuca with the Cobb Highway in Moama at a special community event on Sunday, 10 April 2022.
Visitors will have a unique view of the iconic bridge and enjoy the chance to walk the new road prior to opening to vehicles.
Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Infrastructure, Transport and Regional Development Barnaby Joyce said the Echuca-Moama Bridge Project would deliver travel and economic benefits to the region.
“This is what the Nationals are about – delivering the projects that our regions need, to make them and our nation as strong as possible as quickly as possible,” the Deputy Prime Minister said.
“We fought for the funding for the new Echuca-Moama Bridge and we secured it. And now we’ve delivered the biggest transport infrastructure project this region has seen.
“This is a once-in-a-generation project that will transform this region, keeping commuters moving and freight flowing to our ports, helping our nation get paid for the products we produce.
“We’ve already seen its economic impact during construction, with the project supporting more than 400 direct jobs and up to 1,400 indirect jobs.
“It’s projects like this that make our nation wealthier and stronger.”
Victorian Minister for Transport Infrastructure Jacinta Allan said the new river crossing would be warmly welcomed by the local community in Echuca and Moama.
“The community has been waiting for decades for a second river crossing to better connect Echuca and Moama and we’re delighted to be able to deliver that for them months ahead of schedule,” Minister Allan said.
“I look forward to standing there with the community and celebrating the opening of a landmark project that will keep Echuca and Moama moving for decades to come.”
New South Wales Minister for Regional Transport and Roads Sam Farraway said one of the project’s most important legacies would be creating a significant long-standing connection between NSW and Victoria.
“The new river crossing will provide an essential tourism link between Victoria and NSW, with the more than one million people who visit this popular tourist hot spot annually now able to commute between both towns far more easily,” Mr Farraway said.
“In addition to boosting tourism, the project has created more than 400 direct jobs and up to 1,100 indirect jobs, with many local businesses and suppliers employed to provide ongoing services.”
Federal Member for Nicholls, Damian Drum, said the new Echuca-Moama bridge was testament to The Nationals in Government delivering for regional Australia.
“Well over 1000 jobs were created during construction and the new bridge is going to give the Echuca and Moama communities the river crossing they have always wanted,” Mr Drum said.
“It’s been 50 years in the making and I’m incredibly proud that we’ve finally made this long-awaited and much-needed bridge a reality.”
Federal Member for Farrer Sussan Ley said the long-awaited second Murray crossing complements a string of projects underway or completed on both sides of the border, each moving forward with funding from the Australian Government.
“From upgrades along the Newell Highway, work towards another new crossing at Swan Hill-Murray Downs, to local Roads to Recovery and black spot funding including a number of Heavy Vehicle safety projects.”
“The Australian Government continues to invest in, and deliver, the road infrastructure which matters to our communities, businesses, freight operators and the tourism sector.”
Victorian Member for Northern Victoria Mark Gepp said the community event is a great opportunity for locals to enjoy a sneak peak of the bridge.
“We look forward to welcoming the community for a walk over the iconic new bridge that will better connect locals and visitors between Echuca and Moama for years to come,” Mr Gepp said.
Workers have clocked more than 640,000 hours so far on Stage 3 of the project alone. This includes more than 40,000 hours worked by apprentices, trainees and cadets, which exceeds the project’s Major Projects Skills Guarantee commitment by 25 per cent.
The Echuca-Moama Bridge Project is jointly funded by the Australian, Victorian and NSW governments.
More information on the project can be found at regionalrailrevival.vic.gov.au.
Source: Vic Government