Covering the Goulburn and Murray valleys

Bridge decision 'hush hush'

A roads authority recommendation on the route for the new Yarrawonga Mulwala bridge is on track to be made by the end of August – but it will not be made public.

RACHEAL WILLETT August 26, 2014 3:51pm

VicRoads Regional Director Bryan Sherritt told the Yarrawonga Chronicle the roads authority recommendation would be made to the Victorian Roads Minister Terry Mulder for him to make a decision on the preferred route option.

The details of the VicRoads recommendation – whether it is grey, green or yellow – will not be revealed to the Yarrawonga Mulwala community.

Mr Sherritt said it would not be fair to the community for VicRoads and Maritime Services to pre-empt the decision of the Victorian and NSW governments.

Throughout several years of the Yarrawonga Mulwala bridge planning study and community consultation process VicRoads has said the culmination of the process would be a recommendation made to the state roads minister.

At no stage did VicRoads representatives say the recommendation would be made public and at no stage did they say it would not be made public.

“We will make a recommendation in the best interest of the long-term future of the Yarrawonga and Mulwala communities,” Mr Sherrit said.

“A decision will be made by VicRoads based on all of the information gathered to date and it is expected that we will make a recommendation for the Minister for Public Transport and Roads in September.

 “As to when the minister will make a decision - that is yet to be determined.”

VicRoads has confirmed a meeting will be held on August 29 with representatives from both road authorities and Moira and Corowa shire councils and an invitation has been extended to Member for Murray Valley Tim McCurdy and Member for Albury Greg Aplin to attend.

Mr Sherritt said VicRoads would not be announcing any recommendation on the bridge route option at that meeting.

Mr McCurdy told the Yarrawonga Chronicle he was somewhat surprised the roads authority bridge route recommendation would not be made public.

“But I’ve never been involved in the process of building a bridge before and if that is part of the process then so be it,” he said.

“In terms of when a decision is made, it may well depend on whether the minister decides more information is needed or more work needs to be done to make a final decision.

“Obviously I would rather a decision be made sooner rather than later and once the minister has the information from VicRoads I’m sure he will listen to the views of the local member and the community before making a decision.”

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