Isabella Creek Bridge upgrade completed

The Department of Transport and Main Roads (TMR) completed works to improve the resilience of Isabella Creek Bridge on Endeavour Valley Road, in time for the 2020-21 wet season.

Endeavour Valley Road is a critical link between Cooktown and the remote Indigenous community of Hope Vale in Far North Queensland. Isabella Creek Bridge is frequently inundated by flooding during significant rain events, causing disruption to supply and access to the Hope Vale community.

Flooding associated with Tropical Cyclone Penny in December 2018 washed away the bridge deck surface. Emergency works were undertaken to patch the pavement surface; however, the bridge was subsequently re-damaged by flooding during the North and Far North Queensland Monsoon Trough event in January 2019.

Given the history of local flooding and its importance as a remote road link, TMR identified Isabella Creek Bridge as a priority site in the 2019 Betterment Program to improve the flood immunity and resilience of the state-controlled road network.

Betterment funding was available for key resilience projects in areas activated under the Disaster Recovery Funding Arrangements (DRFA) following the North and Far North Queensland Monsoon Trough event in 2019, where sites had eligible damage under Category B of the DRFA.

In January 2020, the Isabella Creek Bridge’s damaged timber decking was replaced. Reconstruction works commenced in mid-September 2020 to prepare and waterproof the deck, ready for a new concrete deck surface. In October 2020, the reconstruction works were carried out to remove and replace the deck surface. Works were completed in mid-December 2020.

Betterment works on Isabella Creek Bridge began in October 2020 to resurface the bridge deck with a specially formulated concrete mixture that is more resilient to flood events. Concrete pouring of the deck was undertaken over five nights in mid-October 2020, with bridge closure times coordinated to minimise impacts on the community. The bridge was open to traffic during the day. The betterment works were completed in mid-December 2020.

Previously unsealed sections of Endeavour Valley Road were sealed in 2018 through the Commonwealth-State jointly funded Cape York Region Package. The Isabella Creek Bridge upgrade complements these works by ensuring wet weather resilience at this frequently flooded site.

Eligible reconstruction works were jointly funded by the Commonwealth and Queensland Governments under the DRFA.