Mowbray Bridge fishing platform could still go ahead

MOWBRAY RIVER

Howard Salkow

Senior Journalist

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There is still hope for a new Mowbray River fishing platform. IMAGE: Newsport.
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ALL is not yet lost for the resurrection of the Old Mowbray Bridge Fishing Platform, after Council said today it is still keen to pursue the project but requires the appropriate planning before allocating funds.

In May last year it was reported that the popular fishing spot had to be halted after the Department of Transport and Main Roads quadrupled the cost of the project.

Douglas Shire had budgeted $100,000 for the new platform but had the proposal knocked back by the Department, who said they would need a further $300,000 to complete road works.

The state government requested a new pullover lane southbound on the Captain Cook Highway and a turning lane northbound, throwing the whole project into question.

In a statement to Newsport, Mayor Julia Leu said Council will consider funding a traffic study for the road near the Old Mowbray Bridge site during the 2018/19 Budget Review to be held later this year.

“The Department of Transport and Main Roads advised Council during community consultation in early 2017 that further road upgrades near the site would be required.

“These upgrades pushed the expected cost far beyond Council’s budget.”

She said Council is still keen to pursue the project and requires the appropriate planning before allocating funds.

“During consultation, Council held a meeting with interested parties on site, fielded phone calls and took submissions via email.”

In the consultation stage – which closed on February 28 last year – it was proposed that the preliminary plan was to build a fishing platform extending to the first span.

“In preference to timber, the proposal was to use a 100% recycled plastic product developed to be used in a wide variety of applications including decking and safety rails.

“It would come in a modular form meaning the platform could be built off site and installed via a crane, reducing construction costs. The product would be resistant to termites, microorganisms and moisture, and would never split, rot, crack or need painting.

“It was also proposed to install bollards to prevent vehicle access and these would be positioned in the vicinity of where the barricades are at present. A landscaped walking track would then be created between the bollards and the platform.

“There are no plans at this stage to formalise the vehicle parking area,” it said.

In her statement last year Leu said irrespective of whether there is a fishing platform at the Mowbray Bridge or not, the area is currently extremely dangerous.

“Motorists are pulling over on the side of the road and running across a major highway to get photos from unsafe locations around the bridge, which is an accident waiting to happen.

“It’s a situation we were trying to alleviate with our original proposal for the fishing platform and formalised parking,” said Leu.

 

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