New South Wales Roads and Maritime has developed an innovative solution to make building bridges to replace 660 timber structures across the state faster and cheaper.

A Roads and Maritime Services spokesperson said the number of ageing bridges has been a major challenge for the NSW Government as it works to improve regional roads.

“It’s why the Country Bridge Solutions team at Roads and Maritime was given the task of developing a set of standardised, easy-to-build designs.

“The team worked closely with councils across the state and last December finalised a suite of technical manuals and drawings to fast track the replacement of bridges.

“The solution meets the needs of councils for a 100 year life, and the design comes in one and two lane bridge designs with eight, 10 and 12 metre spans.

“This means the design, although it’s standardised, will suit different topographies, while providing more resilient bridge structures which can withstand weather events.”

The first structure built using the Country Bridge Solutions design was at Bookookoorara Creek in Tenterfield which was completed faster and cheaper than other design options.

“The bridge was built in five months, about two months quicker than similar design options, for $1.08 million which is below average cost for this type of structure.

“It’s pleasing to say another two bridges have now progressed to the design stage and others are in the early stages of assessment.”

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