John ‘Jack’ McFadden made a plea at the council meeting about “the thorn in our side.”
Mr McFadden (pictured above) wants Richmond Valley Council to fix the dip in the Coraki-Woodburn Road that floods so badly.
“For as long as I can remember there has been a dip in the Coraki-Woodburn Road, near the Bungawalbin Bridge,” he said at tonight’s council meeting (Tuesday, June 28).
“This is the first part of the road to be cut off by floodwaters and the last to recede.”
The floodwater on the road was “devastating for people on properties” as it gave them less time to decide whether to leave their farms or not and to gauge the depth of the flood.
Mr McFadden wants the council to put pipes on the existing road base and build over them.
“Our lower river towns need this escape route,” he said.
During the big flood on March 1, Mr McFadden was able to get his cattle to high ground in his paddock on Coraki-Ellangowan Road a few days before the floodwaters cut off the Coraki-Woodburn Road.
When he had to go check on them days after the floods, he had to go through Tintenbar and Alstonville to reach the paddock – a 150km round trip from Evans Head where he lives.
“The pipes will keep the Richmond Valley economy flowing instead of coming to a standstill for those extra days,” he said.
Please do this in our lifetime, Mr McFadden pleaded to council.
Council’s general manager Vaughan Macdonald said the section of road Jack was talking about had already been identified as a “weak point”.
The funding to fix the road could come from $7 million from the State Government.
“It is a 70-metre section of road.
“If we raise the road, it needs significant culverts under it,” Mr Macdonald said.
The council will do a design and costing.
“It is definitely on the agenda,” Mr Macdonald said.
“We want to get it done.”
As Mr McFadden left the floor, he had one more thing to say.
“Let’s do Reardons Lane too.”