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Road sealing brings reliefto Wanaaring residents

Bourke Mayor Barry Hollman, with Council General Manager Mark Riley and Grader Operator Kerry Tiffen on the Wanaaring Road construction site near Dargle Bore between Romani and Wangamana. Photo TWH

Major road works programs are on track across Bourke Shire, with the final stretch of the current Wanaaring Road reconstruction and sealing program almost complete at a total cost so far of $27 million.

Crews are working on this last 16 kilometres of the Romani to Wangamana section and council is hopeful the weather will hold and allow that work to be finished by May 2021.

Once this section is complete, only 36 kilometres of this important road is left to be sealed, and Bourke Council is busy applying for further funding to complete the work.

General Manager Mark Riley said the sealing of the Wanaaring Road had brought a profound improvement in the day-to-day lives of the residents in the west of the shire.

“The difference that the sealed road has made on the quality of life for those residents is hard to imagine,” Mr Riley said.

“The work that council staff and contractors have done so far has been substantial and most pleasing.

“If council is successful with further funding applications in coming months, work on the final 36 kilometres would commence by the end of this year.

“The work so far has made a huge difference to the residents of Wanaaring who say they can go back and forth to Bourke quite easily now.

“Residents have told me that they don’t mind driving out the gate and zipping into town to do the shopping.

“Before the road was sealed, that trip was literally bone-jarring. Not only will their cars last longer, they have access to the services in Bourke and beyond in a reasonable time, which is a great outcome for the residents.

“The road has significantly improved their quality of life and that’s in line with council’s strategic direction for the shire,” he said.

For Kathy Brown, operator of the Wanaaring Store and Caravan Park, the sealed road has meant a huge difference to her daily and weekly commutes.

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