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Work on the Clarence River Bridge at Grafton full steam ahead

Main: Releveled levee wall: The wall has been raised by the height of two bricks to maintain flood immunity. Work to raise the adjacent earth mound is expected to start soon. Inset: An example of an earth mound raised to maintain flood immunity. Images: Contributed.

Work on the $240 million bridge over the Clarence River is ramping up with increased activity in and around Grafton.
“Early work on the new bridge to be built 70 metres downstream from the existing road and rail bridge, started in November last year with vegetation clearing on Pound Street and building removal,” a Roads and Maritime Services spokesperson said.
“Work to re-level the existing levee system at various locations along the river at Grafton is about 25 per cent complete, utility relocations have started and property removal and salvage work is complete.
“Recently three significant pieces of work have started in the areas of Pound, Greaves and Clarence streets.
“This includes permanently closing a section of Pound Street, temporarily closing Greaves Street and building a car park at the corner of Pound and Clarence streets.
“Pound Street will be permanently closed to through traffic between Clarence and Kent streets for utility relocation, installing environmental controls and earthwork ahead of bridge embankment work which is expected to start later this year. Pound Street will then become the approach road to the new bridge.
“Access to Bridge Street will be via the intersection of Pound and Clarence streets for motorists while pedestrian access to Pound Street will be maintained at all times during work.
“For the benefit of the community a car park will be built at the corner of Pound and Clarence streets to offset the parking which will be temporarily reduced in Pound Street while the bridge is being built.
“When completed in June, weather permitting, the car park will have capacity for 30 vehicles. It will remain after the bridge opens to traffic to provide increased parking for North Coast TAFE.
“Greaves Street will be closed to through traffic for about the next six months, weather permitting, for utilities to be relocated and earthwork. Residents can use Pound Street to access their properties during the closure.
“There may be an increase in traffic on Clarence, Kent and Bacon streets due to the traffic detours however this will end when the second crossing opens in 2019.
“Motorists are reminded to keep to speed limits and follow the direction of traffic controllers and signs while this important work is carried out,” the spokesperson said.
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