November 21, 2023
It’s been carrying traffic since June, but the “new” John Peterson Bridge on Mundubbera-Durong Road was officially opened on Monday.
The higher, two-lane concrete bridge has replaced the previous flood-prone, single-lane, timber girder bridge.
The road alignment has also been straightened, shortening the overall route by about 700m.
Construction crews built the new eight-span bridge while motorists continued to use the old timber bridge to minimise disruptions.
It took 18 months to complete and included a 3.2km realignment and upgrade of Mundubbera-Durong Road.
The old John Peterson Bridge was built in 1925 and designed to withstand immersion during flooding of the Boyne River.
It first went under just two years later and then almost every year between 1927 and 1935.
During the 2010-11 floods, it was closed to traffic for about three weeks.
The bridge has been critical in supporting the region’s agricultural industry.
The first bridge provided a connection over the Boyne River for local dairy farmers accessing the Mundubbera butter factory.
These days, however, it is a key freight route, with heavy vehicles making up about 25 per cent of the roughly 475 vehicles which use the bridge every day.
“In addition to the safety and economic benefits, the new bridge has reduced the need for ongoing maintenance, and improved traffic efficiency,” Transport Minister Mark Bailey said.
“The posted speed limit has been lifted from 60km/h to 100km/h and two lanes of traffic are able to cross simultaneously. This is a significant improvement upon the former one-lane, give way arrangement on the old bridge.
“The project also included work on the approaches to the bridge, with the Hawkwood and Beeron Roads intersections upgraded.”
Assistant Minister for Regional Roads Bruce Saunders said the completion of the project marked a significant milestone for the communities and primary industries which relied on this crossing.
“Mundubbera-Durong Road is a main thoroughfare that carries thousands of vehicles every week, including heavy vehicles laden with cattle, timber and grain.
“We know a more reliable and safer bridge with greater flood immunity brings a wealth of advantages, which is why we are thrilled to have provided this vital piece of infrastructure.”
“The higher bridge’s new alignment improves the flood immunity to only 1 per cent likelihood of being flooded in any given year and will maintain network connectivity on this important freight route.”
The $25 million project was completed by Queensland Bridge and Civil with funding from the Federal and State governments.
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