Inverell Shire Council Deputy Mayor Anthony Michael, left, General Manager Paul henry, Northern Tablelands MP Adam Marshall, Deputy Premier John Barilaro and Mayor Paul Harmon onsite discussing the construction of a roundabout on the intersection of the Gwydir Highway and the Tingha Road Bridge last week.
Wednesday, 30 November 2016
ONE of Inverell’s busiest intersections was brought to the attention of Deputy Premier John Barilaro with a personal inspection last week, during his visit to the region.
Inverell Shire Mayor Paul Harmon, Deputy Mayor Anthony Michael and General Manager Paul Henry briefed Mr Barilaro and Northern Tablelands MP Adam Marshall on the traffic problems at the Gwydir Highway and Tingha Road Bridge intersection and plans to construct a roundabout to alleviate traffic congestion and safety concerns.
“This intersection is one of the busiest in Inverell and the major road link for the community to Guyra, Bundarra and Armidale,” Mr Marshall said.
“As Inverell continues to grow, this intersection will become even more congested during peak times with school buses, trucks and local traffic.
“Already council is very concerned at the back up of traffic turning on to the bridge and the potential for major accidents in the area.”
In the lead up to the recent federal election, New England MP Barnaby Joyce pledged $1.5 million to building a roundabout at the intersection, but council says the final cost will be closer to $3 million.
“It’s not as simple as just building a roundabout,” Mr Marshall said.
“There will likely be a lot of work to re-align the Gwydir Highway and the bridge approach to construct the roundabout. With the service station across the road, space is at a premium and the final design will have to be carefully considered.”
Inverell Shire Council is currently finalising plans for the roundabout, which will then be assessed and approached by NSW Roads & Maritime Services (RMS).
Mr Marshall said council had already committed $500,000 to the project and was seeking the balance of the funding from the State Government, estimated to be around $1 million.
“While a formal submission won’t be made to the government until the design plans are finalised, costed and approved, the Deputy Premier immediately understood the need for the roundabout and was very keen to see the final proposal,” he said.
“This is a very important road project for council and the community with the need to address this potential traffic hazard and accident black spot not lost on anyone.
“I’ll continue to work closely with council on this project and ensure that the final plans receive due consideration by the government as we lobby for the required funds.”