Raleigh Road Bridge gets wider, safer path

Riders will be relieved that the narrow and crowded path across the Maribyrnong River on the Raleigh Road Bridge will be widened.

Not only that, it will be doubled: a second, wide shared path will be fitted to the other side of the busy road.

The Department of Transport is investing $2.7 million in the project, which has been in planning for several years.

From next year there will be a 3m shared path on both sides of the bridge, including much needed safety railing.

The paths on the bridge are currently narrow, with a deep drop-off to the road surface.

And since the building of the Afton Street footbridge just up the river, a hectic walking circuit had developed, crowding the bridge path with more than 3000 bikes, walkers, prams and dogs each day.

Fortunately there was a huge amount of wasted road space on the bridge deck, with each traffic lane about 50 percent wider than necessary.

The DoT has been able to widen the paths comfortably by eliminating the lazy road space and converting it to use by people on foot and bike.

There will also be improved connections to the river trails to the north and south of the bridge and some tram poles will be relocated to remove hazards.

Bike lanterns will be installed at the pedestrian crossings adjacent to the bridge, encouraging more riders to use alternative sides of the structure to cross the river.

A contractor has been appointed ands work is expected to be underway during December through to February. Most work will be done at night.

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