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Bridgewater Bridge Replacement Planning Study

Project Background

The Bridgewater Bridge is part of the wider Midland Highway Improvement Projects which are designed to upgrade the northern approaches to Hobart.

These projects represent the largest strategic infrastructure development undertaken in Tasmania's history and will deliver significant benefits to the Tasmanian community in terms of safety, efficiency and economic advantages. Specifically the Brighton Transport Projects will relieve increasing traffic congestion and improve safety on the region's key traffic corridor and improve efficiency of freight movement in to and out of Southern Tasmania.

The Bridgewater Bridge is a recognised landmark on the Southern Tasmanian landscape as a gateway to Tasmania's capital city. The existing bridge is limited in its ability to perform the function of the Midland Highway, part of the National Land Transport Network. Planning works for the replacement of the Bridgewater Bridge have been ongoing for a number of years. DIER has been building on this previous work to prepare a preferred design for the new bridge.

Current Status

The preferred design for the bridge was submitted to the Federal Government in mid 2012. Click here for submission.

The Federal and State Governments have worked together to advance funding for priority land acquisition. This acquisition process is now underway.

Funding to continue the development phase of this project is being sought under the Nation Building 2 program. As part of this phase a number of approvals will be sought including Aboriginal heritage, environmental and planning.

The earliest possible construction would be under any future potential  Nation Building 3 program.

Property Acquisition

There are a number of stages in the legal process that must be followed for properties acquired voluntarily under the Land Acquisition Act.  Prior to an offer of purchase, valuations are undertaken and the land owner can seek leave to have their own valuation undertaken at the cost of the Department.

In the case of the Bridgewater Bridge, valuations have been undertaken for all but two of the properties.  A number of property owners have taken advantage of obtaining their own valuations.

Offers of purchase have been given to 12 property owners and negotiations are continuing.  Currently agreement has been reached with respect to 5 acquisitions.

How long it will take to conclude the whole process is largely dependent on the complexity of the property involved, the nature of the negotiations and the expectations of the property owners.  It was always considered that this would be an 18 month process.

It is hoped that a number of priority properties whose owners are eager to move and so end their uncertainty will have their property acquisition resolved this year.

Others who may welcome some extended time to make the move are expected to have their property negotiations finalised by the middle of next year.

Based on current estimates and advice from the Valuer General, the $6.4 million provided by the Federal Governement will cover the acquisitions.

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