• Diggers Pedestrian Bridge and Landscaping

The old Diggers Bridge is one of the few remaining wooden bridges in the shire, and a favourite spot for wedding photos. As part of the construction of a new two-lane bridge across the Mowbray River, Council committed to keeping the wooden Diggers Bridge and maintain it in the long term as a recreational facility for fishers, walkers and cyclists.

Budget: $250,000

digger street bridge

August:

Elements completed include:

  • The planting of 336 rainforest trees on the northern side of the access road. A total of 36 different species have been planted and include Lilly Pilly trees, Ylang Ylang, several variety of figs, Yellow Cheesewoods and Mountain Cedar trees. According to the local cane farmer all are thriving.
  • The now unused section of bitumen road has been removed.
  • The area has been levelled out.
  • A water meter has been installed.

Further work planned includes:

  • Planting of three Golden Pendas within the area to provide shade


September:

  • Major exposed earth area to be grass-seeded.


October:

  • Drinking fountain has been delivered to Council and will be installed.
  • Concrete slab will be constructed for picnic table.
  • Picnic Table has been ordered and will be installed.
  • Turf will be placed in the localised area. Localised area surrounding the picnic table.
  • Douglas Historical Society has provided the wording and design for a historical sign for the site.

 

November:

  • The creation of a 2-metre-wide pathway leading from the cycle lane on the new Diggers Bridge and connecting to Mowbray River Road.
  • The refurbishment of the wooden pedestrian bridge is being done by Council crews and will commence following the completion of Warner Street Soft Approach and Atoll Street Drainage. This is anticipated to be early November and work includes:
    • Concrete repair to all concrete piers
    • Twelve new girders
    • Six new corbels
    • Thirty new Deck Units

Council is also replacing the existing water main which runs along Mowbray River Road from Diggers Bridge south through to the end cap. This work is scheduled for Oct/Nov. There may be an interruption to water supply when the changeover occurs, however all households will be given notice of the day and time period.

There have been reports of illegal campers at Diggers Bridge and Council’s Local Laws team have been advised. We have a suggestion to hedge the Diggers Bridge area, to prevent vehicle access and allow only pedestrians/cyclists. During our site meeting about the area, there was the assumption there would be an area for cars to park.

Project briefing: 

There are two parts to this project.

The first involves refurbishment of the existing wooden bridge based on the engineer’s report completed in June 2018. The refurbishment of the pedestrian bridge and the installation of handrails will ensure the continued safe use of the wooden bridge for cyclists and pedestrians. Refurbishment to the pedestrian bridge includes:

  • Concrete repair to all concrete piers.
  • Twelve new girders.
  • Six new corbels
  • Thirty new Deck Units

The second involves landscaping of the surrounds and a vegetation plan may be viewed here. In summary, the landscaping proposed includes:

  • Removal of the now unused section of bitumen road.
  • Levelling out of the area and grassing of same.
  • Planting of a few shade trees.
  • Placement of table and chairs.
  • Installation of a Douglas Historical Society sign providing information about the original Diggers Bridge built in 1919.
  • The creation of a 2 metre wide pathway leading from the cycle lane on the new Diggers Bridge and connecting to Mowbray River Road.

 

Landscape Plan:

 

Diggers Bridge Re-vegetation Plan (648.1 KiB)

We are also exploring what type/s of vegetation could be used to cover the concrete on the river bank.

This could be either ferns or grasses which could grow in the concrete fibre, or vines which could drape over the area.

We have already planted 336 rainforest plants on the northern side of the access road.

A total of 36 different species have been planted and include Lilly Pilly trees, Ylang Ylang, several variety of figs, Yellow Cheesewoods and Mountain Cedar trees.

Feedback on the draft landscape plan is welcome as are any ideas for the wooden pedestrian bridge.

Please email comments through to gaye.scott@douglas.qld.gov.au by 6 July 2019.