Damaged Amamoor Creek bridge is not up to scratch and is no longer able to carry the heavy Muster traffic burden.
Damaged Amamoor Creek bridge is not up to scratch and is no longer able to carry the heavy Muster traffic burden. Contributed

Gympie Muster bridge on its way

FOR a few weeks every year, it has probably been Australia's busiest one-lane creek crossing.

But now Amamoor Creek has a bridge worthy of the huge crowds it carries every year on their way to the Gympie Music Muster.

The new $2.4 million concrete structure will replace the old timber bridge, which has faithfully carried more than a generation of Muster goers across the creek, along with several generations of permanent residents.

Infrastructure councillor Larry Friske said the old bridge had been damaged by floods in January 2012.

Damage to the bridge and its pedestrian walkway was only part of the massive repair job needed after floods wrecked large sections of the Muster route.

Amamoor Creek Rd attracted special federal and state government attention because of its vital community role in providing access to the Muster, which itself provides financial assistance to community groups.

Cr Friske said work by contractor, Queensland Concrete and General Construction Co, would account for $2 million of the total project budget.

The project is funded under the Natural Disaster Relief and Recovery Arrangements, Cr Friske said.

He said joint federal-state funding under the NDRRA would account for about 75% of the total project cost.

"Gympie Regional Council is providing 25% of the project costs to widen the bridge to two lane plus pedestrian walkway," Cr Friske said.

He said progress so far had prompted official optimism that the bridge would open before Christmas.

"Installation of deck units started and was due to finish last week," he said.

There are 40 deck units involved - each weighing in excess of 20t, Cr Friske said.

The upgrade may have come just in time, not only for replacing a timber bridge obviously approaching the end of its useful life, but also from the point of view of providing safe access across the creek for growing Muster crowds every year.

The Muster was recently classified a "major event" for the purposes of Queensland Government funding assessments.