McKanes Bridge

McKanes Bridge upgrade

The NSW Government is upgrading the McKanes Bridge over Coxs River on McKanes Falls Road at South Bowenfels. The work includes replacement of the existing bridge with a safer, stronger and more reliable bridge which still has the appearance and heritage aspects of the original.

Latest news

MAY 2020

MAY 2020Restoration starts on 127-year-old-McKanes Bridge

Work has started on the upgrade the historic McKanes Bridge across Coxs River at South Bowenfels.

The $10 million upgrade funded by the NSW Government will ensure the bridge meets current and future operational needs of the road network.

The much needed restoration work will see the bridge receive a new deck and stronger supports, while maintaining its heritage.

Stage one of the work includes vegetation removal, relocating powerlines downstream of the bridge, site establishment with site compounds and work areas constructed on either side of the bridge, and installation of a temporary support steel structure. 

The bridge will remain open during stage one.

Stage two of the work will start mid to late 2020 and will include dismantling and restoration of the existing bridge components requiring repair, strengthening of the existing truss with new steel and timber elements, strengthening of the existing foundations with concrete, and final roadwork and landscaping.

In order to complete stage two, the bridge will be closed to traffic for 12 months with a detour via Jenolan Caves Road and the Great Western Highway,” Mr Lunn said.

All road users will be told in advance of stage two work starting later in 2020. 

Work will be carried out on weekdays from 7am to 6pm, and some Saturdays with the full upgrade expected to be completed by late 2021, weather permitting.

Project information

McKanes Bridge is one the NSW’s oldest timber truss bridges.

McKanes Bridge was built in 1893 and is one of only four remaining McDonald timber truss bridges in NSW. Its restoration will ensure one of the oldest examples of a McDonald timber truss bridge in NSW is conserved.

The NSW Government is providing $10 million for the project to ensure the state heritage-listed timber truss bridge continues to serve the community while reducing maintenance needs in the future.

The upgrade includes replacing old timber elements with new timber and new heritage sympathetic materials to strengthen the bridge, while still retaining the appearance and design of the original bridge.

The Review of Environmental Factors (REF) for the McKanes Bridge upgrade was on display for public comment from Wednesday 30 October to Monday 25 November 2019. During this time, Transport for NSW received a total of 36 submissions relating to the project. All submissions made during the display period have been addressed and responded to in a Submissions Report (PDF, 714Kb) which is now available.

The McKanes Bridge upgrade Submissions Report relates to the REF prepared for the project and summarises the issues raised as well as responses to each issue raised by the community and stakeholders.

The McKanes Bridge upgrade Community Consultation Report (PDF, 5.79Mb) is also now available. This report summarises Transport for NSW’s consultation with the community and key stakeholders about the project during the display period in October and November 2019.

Transport for NSW as the determining authority has considered the information in the REF, Submissions Report and Community Consultation Report and has made the decision to proceed with the project.

The first stage of work started on May 11 and and the second stage of the work will start mid to late 2020. Transport for NSW will continue to consult with the community and stakeholders prior to and during the construction phase.

  • Upgrade the existing bridge to allow safe use by vehicles up to general mass limit (GML) standard.
  • Replace the existing timber side rails with a steel traffic barrier over the full length of the bridge.
  • Restore the condition of the major structural bridge elements to original condition (by replacement or repair).
  • Preserve the heritage form of the bridge (truss type)
  • The upgrade design is to have as minimal a negative impact to heritage value as possible, while still achieving the above proposal objectives.
  • Minimise operating costs of the bridge as far as possible while still achieving the proposal objectives.
  • Upgrading the structural capacity of the bridge
  • Retaining the original McDonald timber truss design
  • Upgrading critical structural elements of the bridge with superior and more durable elements
  • Upgrading the existing bridge to allow safe use by vehicles up to general mass limit (GML) standard.

Project documents


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