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McCurdy backs green route

Member for Murray Valley Tim McCurdy has declared his support for the green route.

RACHEAL WILLETT April 29, 2014 4:20pm

Mr McCurdy spoke first to the Yarrawonga Chronicle about his decision to publicly announce his route preference as the debate surrounding the location of the new Yarrawonga Mulwala bridge continues.

“Personally I have held the view for some time that the green route is the correct choice,” he said.

“I wanted to wait until everyone had an opportunity to have their say and make their own decision before I influenced the discussion by publicly declaring my preference.

“Now the time is right for me to give my support to the proposed green route.”

The proposed green route would sit to the east of the existing weir bridge, connecting at the old police station in Irvine Parade in Yarrawonga and Gulai Road in Mulwala.

It is one of three short-listed routes, green, grey and yellow, being considered by roads authorities VicRoads and the NSW Roads and Maritime Services.

The grey option would sit right next to the existing ‘traffic’ bridge connecting at Belmore Street in Yarrawonga and Melbourne Street in Mulwala.

The yellow option sits further to the west of the existing ‘traffic’ bridge and would connect at Irvine Parade in Yarrawonga and Melbourne Street in Mulwala.

“The green route is a more practical way to keep traffic out of Belmore Street,” Mr McCurdy said.

“Although the grey route can avoid Belmore Street, in my opinion there is a greater chance of extra traffic in the main street that doesn’t need to be there with the grey route.

“I was in Yarrawonga over Easter and most would agree that anything we can do to reduce traffic will be a major benefit.”

Mr McCurdy said the green route was a 50-year solution, not a short-term fix.

“We are still waiting on a formal business case but early estimates suggest a similar cost for the green and grey routes so money is not influencing this,” he said.

“I encourage people to have their say during the next VicRoads consultation to be held during May.”

Mr McCurdy said apart from one or two casual conversations with constituents, he had received no requests for a formal discussion or opportunity to present a case from supporters of the grey route.

“If there is a strong contrary view to the green route being the best choice for Yarrawonga, then I am yet to hear it,” he said.

“The Yarrawonga community has spoken loud and clear and I am giving my backing to the green route.

“I am supporting Moira Shire’s position on this. I have met with Corowa Shire Council and I respect they have a different view, but I urge them to work with the Moira Shire for a balanced outcome for residents and businesses on both sides of the river.”

In terms of the possible retention of the existing Yarrawonga Mulwala bridge once a new crossing is built, Mr McCurdy said he believed it was best to focus first on the route decision.

“Determining the route for the new bridge is the most important thing at this stage,” he said. “In my view the future of the existing bridge is a discussion for further down the track.”

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