PROGRESS continues to be made so that Echuca-Moama can finally build a bridge and get over the issue that’s been stalking the twin towns for more than 50 years.
And that, of course, is the fact there is only one crossing over the Murray River.
Until the end of 2020, when VicRoads say people will be able to use the second bridge.
‘‘We now have three design consultants and they’ve teamed up with three architects. We’ve shortlisted them to do the design works (for the bridge),’’ VicRoads north-western project director Nigel Powers said.
‘‘The process from here is we get them to provide us with concepts. By about April next year we will have a design to take to the community.
‘‘Everything to date has been a vague concept idea so we will be able to say what the bridge will look and feel like.’’
Construction on the bridge is expected to start in early 2019.
Construction is already underway to upgrade the intersection of Murray Valley Hwy and Warren St, which is stage one of the $280 million project.
It is expected to boost safety and traffic flow by removing the dangerous Y layout.
‘‘Stage one is going really well. Construction started a few weeks ago, there’s lots of action out there now,’’ Mr Powers said. ‘‘We’ve been slowing people down to 40 and had deviations as well.
‘‘The key message we want to get out there is for people to plan ahead with their journeys but also obey the speed limits and restrictions.
‘‘We want everyone to get home safe — and that’s road users as well as road workers.’’
Stage one is expected to be completed by June, 2018.
‘‘We’re out for tender for the next stage,’’ Mr Powers said.
‘‘We will get that in the next month and hope to award early in the new year.
‘‘Exactly when that will start and finish is a little bit up in the air.’’
Mr Powers said the more work that is completed, the more community perception will change.