Murray Bridge council watch: August 2020

Progress is made at Sturt Reserve, silo artworks are proposed, a rift forms on the banks of the River Murray and more.

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War memorial almost complete

Murray Bridge’s new war memorial at Sturt Reserve may be open in time for Remembrance Day, Mayor Brenton Lewis says.

An opening date has not yet been fixed, as work is ongoing at the site of the memorial, beneath Wharf Hill.

But on Monday, Mr Lewis said the council hoped it would be finished by November.

Murray Bridge could be next SA town to get silo artwork

Coonalpyn and Karoonda have their own silo artworks; soon Murray Bridge and Monarto could, too.

Viterra and the Murray Bridge council have both given their in-principle support to the idea of painting murals, or creating other artworks such as projections, on the two commercial grain silos in the district.

Painting even one of the silos would likely cost upwards of $200,000, while projecting images onto one at night time could add another $120,000 to the cost, councillors heard at a meeting on Monday.

That kind of money would have to be found in the council’s 2021-22 budget, or sourced from grants.

If the project did go ahead, the council would likely work with St Joseph’s School and Murray Bridge North School on a design for the Murray Bridge silos, pictured, and Zoos SA for a design for Monarto.

Monarto’s silos are still operational, but Viterra does not plan to open Murray Bridge’s for the upcoming grain harvest.

Government should share responsibility for riverbanks, mayor says

The risk of riverbank collapse should not have to be managed by councils alone, Murray Bridge’s mayor says.

The Murray Bridge council recently spent $150,000 reinforcing a stretch of riverbank at Sturt Reserve which had been cordoned off for safety reasons since the 2009-10 drought.

Ratepayers paid for the work because the land above the waterline is controlled by the council, even though the River Murray itself is a state responsibility.

At a meeting on Monday night, Mayor Brenton Lewis suggested that was unfair.

“We get the backlash, we get the tail end of this it – it’s on us to manage these facilities,” he said.

“We spent $150,000 stuffing around, shoring up some riverbank in Sturt Reserve; we shouldn’t have to.

“We need to be partners in this stuff.”

The council and its neighbours are preparing to present their position to South Australia's Environment and Water Minister.

Lerwin expansion is almost finished

A new wing at Lerwin Nursing Home is “days away” from completion, the Murray Bridge council's chief executive officer says.

Michael Sedgman told councillors on Monday night that the 20-room wing, pictured above, was almost complete.

Residents should be able to move into the new rooms within weeks.

Lovers Lane will become no through road

A safer Jervois Road will be a welcome side effect of the closure to through traffic of a back road at Swanport.

A barrier will be built near the western end of Lovers Lane, the dirt road pictured above, forcing motorists to use Swanport Village Road instead.

That will reduce the number of cars which need to turn onto or off the lane at its intersection with the main road, on a sweeping corner in an 80 kilometre per hour zone.

The cost of closing the lane will be borne by a company called Tynday Pty Ltd, which is planning a 38-lot residential subdivision there.

“Where will all the lovers go?” Mayor Brenton Lewis quipped after councillors voted on the matter.

“I’m sure they'll think of something,” chief executive officer Michael Sedgman replied.

Anerley Road footpath needs fixing, councillor says

A gravel footpath is not good enough for any road with a nursing home on it, a Murray Bridge councillor says.

At August’s council meeting, Clem Schubert questioned why a footpath on Anerley Road, behind Resthaven, had been left unsealed when it was often used by mobility-impaired residents.

Chief executive officer Michael Sedgman promised to find out where the road fit into the council’s footpath-sealing plans.

Photo: Peri Strathearn. Images: Rural City of Murray Bridge (middle), Google Maps (bottom).