A PUBLIC meeting at the Allansford Hall on Thursday night has highlighted the road safety concerns of the town’s residents.
The meeting was called by Warrnambool City Council to discuss the future of the Allansford bridge onZiegler Parade.The meeting was attended by Warrnambool City councillors Mike Neoh and Robert Anderson as well as council infrastructure staff.
The bridge has been closed since flood waters hit the town in September this year.
Council officers presented three options regarding potential work on the bridge.
The first of these is a $110,000 option that would see work carried out to allow the bridge to re-open to allow cars only to use it.This would last for 10 years before further upgrades would be needed.
A longer-term solution, which would last 100 years, would increase the capacity of the bridge to 44 tonnes, allowing buses and trucks to use it. This would cost an estimated $2.5 million. Council said it could find $1.2 million of that but would need to go searching for funding for the remainder. A total re-build would take 12-18 months to complete.
Residents spoke passionately not only about the bridge but also what is now the main entry and exit pointin the town, Garabaldi Lane.
The intersection of Garabaldi Lane and the Princes Highway was described by a member of the audience as ‘a time bomb’ while others asked if it would take the loss of a life before something was done to improve road safety.
Members of the public called for a reductionin the speed limit along the Princes Highway in the approach to Garabaldi Lane. They also said works were badly needed to repair the road surface at the corner.
Concern was also expressed that 6-10 school buses turn in and out of the intersection each weekday and have to contend with limited sight lines and passing vehicles.
Thefeedback from the meeting will be taken back to councillors and council officers with another community meeting to discuss the next step to be held in February.
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