Letter: A bridge too far?

Many months ago you ran a front page article about the four-lane bridge at Batemans Bay that was promised to be built by, I think, the NSW Government about mid-1990s, for completion by 2000.

Readers who may be wondering what happened to that bridge might be interested in the My Thuan bridge the Australian Government built in Vietnam. It was completed, coincidentally, in 2000. It shows what can be done when our government makes an effort.

I am sure we can all be proud of the $90 million bridge we completed in Vietnam and the admirable contribution it will make toward rebuilding that greatly harmed country. But it reminds us it is way past time for standards at home to meet the traffic and safety requirements of modern transport corridors.

Inadequate federal and state government planning has allowed Eurobodalla shire to become a depressed regional area. In the absence of rail, sea or highly developed air transport, roads are our shire’s arteries. With 1950s bridges and bandaids these shamefully neglected arteries are now below third world standards.

We desperately need federal and state funds circulating here. Modest investment (by federal and state standards) would have a huge impact on our struggling local economy and faltering businesses. Proposals to allow B-Double trucks to transit our district must  surely be accompanied by vast improvements to our roads. 

A tough federal election is looming, we are a marginal seat, the outcome will be tight. We should be making the contenders get cold, hard cash circulating now with milestone projects, rather than rely on cheap (non-core) promises shortly before election day.

Don Burns, Tuross Head

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