$6m Stockton Bridge upgrade sees heavy vehicles detoured onto Cabbage Tree and Nelson Bay roads until 2021

Stock image of a truck on Nelson Bay Road at night.
Stock image of a truck on Nelson Bay Road at night.

Heavy vehicles will be detoured along Nelson Bay Road and Cabbage Tree Road for seven months starting in November while Stockton Bridge undergoes a $6 million upgrade.

The NSW Government-funded essential maintenance work to the iconic bridge will be carried out over nine months.

While the state government expects the project will have a limited impact to traffic, with small-sized vehicles still able to use the bridge route, there will be more 68 tonne-plus vehicles on Cabbage Tree and Nelson Bay roads due to a detour in place until June 2021.

"The NSW Government is providing $6 million for the work, which will start early next month, to ensure the bridge continues to provide safe and reliable service for many years to come," Catherine Cusack, Parliamentary Secretary for the Hunter, said.

Orange line shows the detour vehicles 68 tonnes plus will be required to take when work starts on the Stockton Bridge upgrade in November. The detour will be in place until June 30, 2021.

Orange line shows the detour vehicles 68 tonnes plus will be required to take when work starts on the Stockton Bridge upgrade in November. The detour will be in place until June 30, 2021.

"The Stockton Bridge provides a vital link over the Hunter River on the main transport route between Newcastle, Newcastle Airport and Port Stephens.

"Transport for NSW will carry out the work to strengthen the bridge to ensure its ongoing structural integrity and its continued ability to carry heavy vehicles."

Ms Cusack said the maintenance project will support eight full time positions and provide work for about 50 contractors and suppliers.

According the the parliamentary secretary's office, more than 19,000 vehicles use the Newcastle, Newcastle Airport and Port Stephens route each day. Almost 1000 of those are heavy vehicles.

Scaffolding for external bridge work will be installed on Wednesday, November 4 signalling the start to the project.

Work will take place between 7pm and 5am from Sunday to Thursday.

The project is expected to be completed in nine months, weather permitting.

According to Ms Cusack's office, most of the work will be carried out from the scaffolding beneath the bridge. This is why the state government expects there will be a limited impact to traffic.

When night work is carried out and lane closures required, traffic control will be in place. At least one lane will be open each way at all times.

Stockton Bridge. Picture: Supplied

Stockton Bridge. Picture: Supplied

A detour will be in place until Wednesday, June 30, 2021 for vehicles more than 68 tonnes travelling northbound towards Stockton or southbound towards Newcastle.

During this time, these vehicles will be detoured onto Hexham Bridge via the M1 Pacific Highway or Nelson Bay Road and then Cabbage Tree Road.