A NEW pedestrian and cycling bridge alongside Penrith’s Victoria Bridge is planned for completion by early 2015.
A study for NSW Transport recommending the separate bridge between Punt Road, Emu Plains, and Old Ferry Road, Penrith, was released last Tuesday.
“The target is to start building in the first quarter of 2014 and finish a year later,” Penrith state MP Stuart Ayres said.
“We’ve set an ambitious timeline for the longest pedestrian pathway in NSW.”
Victoria Bridge crosses Nepean River, linking Penrith with Emu Plains via the Great Western Highway.
But pedestrians have only one narrow footpath to cross from either side, making the bridge a hazardous journey for them.
Joe Grassi, managing director of Penrith law firm Joseph Grassi & Associates, and other community figures have been campaigning for a safer crossing since 2005.
“It’s now on track and I think it’s fantastic,” Mr Grassi said.
“It’s moved quickly too, since this new state government came in.”
He said he was glad the report endorsed his recommendation for the bridge’s location.
“I think building the bridge from Punt Road would be logical and would create a platform for people to stop and take in the beauty of the river,” he said.
Mr Ayres and the Roads Minister, Duncan Gay, announced the report’s findings near Punt Road on Tuesday.
“It’s a great concept and it’s finally happening,” Mr Gay said.
“The government has committed $20 million.”
Mr Ayres said the study had also identified five other possible locations for the bridge.
He said the public would have the chance to see these recommendations and make submissions.
“There’ll be four weeks of consultation and the report comes back to the steering committee,” Mr Ayres said.
“We expect to see the bridge’s final concept ready by September and there’ll be another round of community engagement.”
The report can be viewed at Penrith Library and at penrithcity.nsw.gov.au.
This story Administrator ready to work first appeared on Nanjing Night Net.