ALBURY Council has backed a residents’ campaign to completely rebuild the Riverina Highway between Lake Hume Village and the Bethanga Bridge.
Mayor Alice Glachan said yesterday it was disappointing funds weren’t available for major work, although she welcomed the patching of sections of the road as a small step forward.
She said this work, due to start on Monday, had come about as a result of she and acting general manager Michael Keys meeting NSW Roads Minister Duncan Gay in Sydney.
The council also lobbied roads parliamentary secretary John Ajaka when he inspected the state-owned highway in December.
“We will continue to seek support and a commitment from Roads and Maritime Services for improvements and ongoing maintenance,” she said.
Former Albury traffic committee chairman Henk van de Ven said a patching job wasn’t good enough and state funds must be allocated for it.
“This road is a disgrace and needs to be totally rebuilt,” he said.
“How many lives have to be lost before we see the work done?
“People have been concerned about the state of the road for 50 years.”
Jeff Hogan, who lived at Lake Hume Village from 1952 to 1962, said the 2.7-kilometre road between the village and bridge was just the same as when he was a boy.
“I used to walk the road to the bridge and it was sealed, but it was just like it is now,” he said.
“In those days Bellbridge wasn’t even started and there wasn’t much traffic, but now the traffic is massive.”
Residents from the Victorian side of the lake, including Julie de Hennin and John Butko, are urging motorists from Albury-Wodonga and areas served by the road to lobby Roads and Maritime Services to provide more funds.