A pedestrian walkway and disused rail line spanning The Plug have been removed to make way for an iconic new bridge that will create a unique connection between the revitalised Koombana Bay foreshore, Koombana North and the CBD.
The final span was removed yesterday after a two-day operation that marked a major milestone in the Koombana Bay foreshore revitalisation project, which has been under way for the past month.
The innovative design of the new bridge, which will feature steel ribs and be lit at night to create an impressive entry into Bunbury, means the existing supports will remain in the water to create a firm foundation.
The bridge will start to take shape over the coming weeks with the striking steel ribs, some of which are more than 7m tall, being constructed by a local firm.
Bunbury Mayor Gary Brennan said it was anticipated the bridge would be completed by the end of July.
“The entire foreshore project is tracking well with work to create a sea wall progressing, fill being added to the site ready for landscaping, and the kiosk partially demolished ready to receive a new lease on life,” Mr Brennan said.
The work is being carried out as Stage 1 of the Transforming Bunbury’s Waterfront project, a joint effort between the City and South West Development Commission and funded through the State Government’s Royalties For Regions Growing Our South Initiative.
The project is expected to be completed by early December. Construction means there is no access to the foreshore area, however, the beach can be accessed from the Dolphin Discovery Centre. The Plug can still be crossed by pedestrians and cyclists via the path on the traffic bridge.
Key facts about the Koombana Bay revitalisation include:
• Construction of 100 extra parking bays, taking the total to almost 400;
• Improved traffic access, including left turn only from Anchorage Cove to Koombana Drive;
• A pedestrian promenade along the beach;
• Revamped kiosk and public amenities;
• Improved beach access, including disabled access;
• Amphitheatre and shaded areas;
• Extensive landscaped areas overlooking the beach, including the relocation of car parks closer to Koombana Drive;
• Removal of the old train line;
• Construction of an accessible playground;
• $10.8m construction tender awarded to contractor Ertech;
• Sixteen South West contractors will be engaged, with the value of local work being $7.85m, or 72 per cent of the total funds to be spent on the project;
• Dolphin Discovery Centre redevelopment also under way as part of Stage 1 of the Transforming Bunbury’s Waterfront project.