Ministers for the Department of Infrastructure, Regional Development and Cities The Hon Michael McCormack MP Deputy Prime MinisterMinister for Infrastructure, Transport and Regional Development Senator the Hon Bridget McKenzie Minister for Regional ServicesMinister for SportMinister for Local Government and Decentralisation The Hon Alan Tudge MP Minister for Cities, Urban Infrastructure and Population The Hon Sussan Ley MP Assistant Minister for Regional Development and Territories The Hon Andrew Gee MP Assistant Minister to the Deputy Prime Minister The Hon Andrew Broad MP Former Assistant Minister to the Deputy Prime Minister The Hon Scott Buchholz MP Assistant Minister for Roads and Transport The Hon Barnaby Joyce MPFormer Deputy Prime MinisterFormer Minister for Infrastructure and Transport The Hon Dr John McVeigh MPFormer Minister for Regional Development, Territories and Local Government The Hon Keith Pitt MPFormer Assistant Minister to the Deputy Prime Minister The Hon Damian Drum MPFormer Assistant Minister to the Deputy Prime Minister Senator the Hon Fiona Nash Former Minister for Regional DevelopmentFormer Minister for Local Government and Territories The Hon Darren Chester MP Former Minister for Infrastructure and TransportFormer A/g Minister for Regional DevelopmentFormer A/g Minister for Local Government and Territories The Hon Warren Truss MP Former Deputy Prime Minister Former Minister for Infrastructure and Regional Development The Hon Paul Fletcher MP Former Minister for Urban Infrastructure and Cities The Hon Jamie Briggs MP Former Assistant Minister for Infrastructure and Regional Development

New Sir Thomas Mitchell Bridge Officially Open

Media Release

WT023/2013

09 November 2013

Joint release with:

Bruce Scott

Federal Member for Maranoa

Howard Hobbs

State Member for Warrego

The new bridge over the Maranoa River was officially commissioned today, providing a safer link between Mitchell and Roma, and South West Queensland communities.

Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Infrastructure and Regional Development, Warren Truss joined Federal Member for Maranoa, Bruce Scott, and State Member for Warrego, Howard Hobbs, to officially commission the Sir Thomas Mitchell Bridge at Mitchell on Saturday.

Mr Truss said the new bridge recognised the Australian and Queensland governments’ commitment to improving connectivity in South West Queensland, and ensured the important national route would remain passable during floods.

“The Sir Thomas Mitchell Bridge is a critical link on the Warrego Highway between Mitchell and Roma and the new crossing will significantly improve this national freight route,” Mr Truss said.

“The project was completed 12 months ahead of schedule…a significant achievement for all involved in its construction.

“The new bridge is almost one metre higher than the previous flood-damaged version, providing far greater flood immunity.

“It is also three metres wider, as well as stronger, to support bigger road trains than the original 1956 bridge.”

Federal Member for Maranoa, Bruce Scott said the new bridge opened to two-lane vehicle traffic and pedestrian use on 31 July this year.

“Further work, including landscaping and demolition of the old bridge was carried out in September, with the final seal to be applied to the highway in mid-November, weather permitting,” Mr Scott said.

The Member for Warrego, Howard Hobbs, called for the fast-tracking of the new bridge after it suffered significant structural damage during the floods of 2012, and after already being damaged in the 2011 floods.

“The second flooding hastened the works and helped determine the new height to protect usability in future flooding,” Mr Hobbs said.

The new Sir Thomas Mitchell Bridge is part of the $58 million upgrade to the Warrego Highway between Roma to Mitchell, with the Australian Government providing $44.1 million to the project.