Over 500 trucks set to use the new and improved Mandagery Creek Bridge

Motorists are enjoying full access to the new Mandagery Creek Bridge in Western NSW, now built with wider lanes and higher mass limits to boost transport efficiency. 

With 500 heavy vehicles set to use it every day, the new $12 million bridge at Manildra has opened to two-way traffic for the first-time last night, following 21 months of construction.  

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Independent member for Orange Phil Donato says the Mandagery Creek Bridge is an important investment in the area, providing a smoother ride for motorists and a longer lasting, stronger bridge. 

“The increased mass limits will provide a welcome boost for freight operators travelling around and through the region, while also supporting the regional economy through improved links to the Parkes Special Activation Precinct,” he says.  

The original bridge built in 1930, no longer met modern design standards with its narrow lanes, and a durability assessment identified extensive carbonation, low concrete strength and cracking, Donato says.  

Work started in September 2022 to replace the original bridge on Henry Parkes Way, which had provided access to the Manildra town centre and been a key link between Orange and Parkes for almost 100 years.  

One lane of traffic was maintained across Mandagery Creek for most of the construction period, as the project included the staged demolition of the original bridge together with the half-half construction of a new bridge on the same alignment.  

Roads minister Jenny Aitchison says this decision meant that up to 10 full weekend closures were scheduled to carry out the work, meaning 30-minute detours through Cudal to get from one side to the other.  

“With the help of a new vibration monitoring technique – using sensors to measure traffic vibration along the length of the completed upstream half of the bridge – the number of full bridge closures was reduced to just four in a win for the local community, tourists and freight operators,” she says.  

“I was so impressed when I visited last year to see first-hand the way this innovative vibration monitoring allowed for a number of critical bridge construction activities to be carried out under traffic.”  

While both lanes of the new bridge are now open, other finishing work will be completed in the coming weeks including: 

  • line-marking and sign installation 
  • reinstating kerbs around temporary site accesses 
  • site decommissioning including the removal of walkways, cabins and construction materials 
  • and the completion of a heritage interpretation area to remain in place as a local landmark 

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