The tender for the reconstruction of two bridges, integral to the region, is expected to bring a boost to jobs, primary produces, retail, hospitality and tourism in Wellington.
The Terrabella Bridge on Terrabella Road and the Burrendong Number 2 Bridge on Fashions Mount Road will be replaced under a government initiative to help enhance access for local communities and facilitate higher productivity vehicle access.
Federal Member for Calare and Minister for Decentralisation and Regional Education, Andrew Gee visited the project sites on Thursday and was pleased that the design and construction tender would be open in the coming months.
"The design and construction of these bridges is a critical piece of infrastructure for the local community," he said.
Mr Gee said there were 30,000 hectares of irrigation and dryland farming country on the southern side of the Macquarie River between Dubbo and Wellington.
The new Terrabella Bridge would accommodate freight vehicles such as 25m B-double trucks, giving access to the NSW road freight network and therefore helping our primary producers get their product to market quickly, safely and efficiently.
"The existing timber bridges are very narrow. The reconstruction will see a widening of both bridges along with construction of two-lane concrete bridges," Mr Gee said.
The Burrendong Number 2 Bridge currently provides vital access to Lake Burrendong, which Mr Gee said was essential for local tourism.
The construction of the new bridge would increase the existing road limit of 42.4 tonnes to a capacity of 68 tonnes, which would improve safety, usability and access for motorists.
This includes visitors towing caravans and boat trailers, along with heavy vehicles servicing the school camp site, the holiday park and rural properties.
Dubbo Regional Council mayor Ben Shields said the existing timber bridges were no longer up to standard and desperately needed replacing.
"In the case of Burrendong Number 2, the existing bridge detracts from our important tourism and recreation location Burrendong Dam. A new, wider concrete bridge will enhance that attraction," he said.
"The replacement of Terrabella Bridge involves a realignment as well as widening from the existing single-lane bridge to two lanes. This will be a real benefit to local residents."
The Australian Government has provided a total of $1.4 million for the projects under Round four of the Bridges Renewal Program.
The Terrabella Bridge project has been allocated $700,000, and another $700,000 has been allocated to the Burrendong Number 2 Bridge project.
The total project cost of the Terrabella Bridge is $3,916,000 with the total cost of the Burrendong Number 2 Bridge anticipated to be $2,117,500.
Dubbo Regional Council has secured $2,716,000 for Terrabella Bridge under the NSW Government Fixing Country Roads program.