Mitchell Highway

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Mitchell Highway

New South Wales
Nervertire.jpg
A typical narrow width of the Mitchell Highway in the regional New South Wales village of Nevertire
Location Mitchell Hwy.svg
General information
Type Highway
Length1,105 km (687 mi)
Route number(s)
  • AUS Alphanumeric Route A71.svgAUS Alphanumeric Route ALTA2.svg A71 / AltA2
  • (Augathella - Charleville)
  • AUS Alphanumeric Route A71.svg A71
  • (Charleville - Qld/NSW Border)
  • New South Wales alphanumeric route B71.svg B71
  • (Qld/NSW Border - Nyngan)
  • New South Wales alphanumeric route A32.svg A32

(Nyngan - Bathurst)

Former
route number
  • Australian national route 71.svg National Route 71
  • Australian national route 32.svg National Route 32
Major junctions
North end
 
South end
Location(s)
Major settlements Charleville, Cunnamulla, Bourke, Nyngan, Narromine, Dubbo, Wellington, Orange
Highway system

The Mitchell Highway is a state highway located in the central and south western regions of Queensland and the northern and central western regions of New South Wales in Australia. The southern part of the Mitchell Highway forms part of the National Highway A32 corridor, which stretches from Sydney to Adelaide via Dubbo and Broken Hill. The Mitchell Highway also forms part of the shortest route between Sydney and Darwin , via Bourke and Mount Isa; making it an important road link for the transport of passengers and freight for regional New South Wales and Queensland. [1]

Highway A public road or other public way on land

A highway is any public or private road or other public way on land. It is used for major roads, but also includes other public roads and public tracks: It is not an equivalent term to controlled-access highway, or a translation for autobahn, autoroute, etc.

Central West Queensland Region in Queensland, Australia

Central West Queensland is a remote region in the Australian state of Queensland which covers 396 650.2 km². The region lies to the north of South West Queensland and south of the Gulf Country.

South West Queensland Region in Queensland, Australia

South West Queensland is a remote region in the Australian state of Queensland which covers 319,808 km2 (123,479 sq mi). The region lies to the south of Central West Queensland and west of the Darling Downs and includes the Maranoa district and parts of the Channel Country. The area is noted for its cattle grazing, cotton farming, opal mining and oil and gas deposits.

Contents

In New South Wales, the Mitchell Highway's south-eastern terminus is at its junction with the Great Western and Mid-Western highways, and it links with the Golden, Newell, Oxley, Barrier and Kamilaroi highways. In Queensland, the Mitchell links with the Balonne and Warrego highways and its northern terminus is at its junction with the Landsborough Highway.

A junction is where two or more roads meet.

Great Western Highway Highway in New South Wales

The Great Western Highway is a 201-kilometre-long (125 mi) state highway in New South Wales, Australia. From east to west, the highway links Sydney with Bathurst, on the state's Central Tablelands.

Mid-Western Highway highway in New South Wales

The Mid-Western Highway, sometimes the Mid Western Highway, is a 522-kilometre (324 mi) state highway located in the central western and northern Riverina regions of New South Wales, Australia. The highway services rural communities and links the Great Western, Mitchell, Olympic, Newell, Cobb and Sturt highways. The Mid-Western Highway forms part of the most direct route road link between Sydney and Adelaide, with its eastern terminus in Bathurst and western terminus in Hay.

The Mitchell Highway carries the A32 shield from its eastern terminus in Bathurst to Nyngan; [2] thereafter carrying the B71 shield north to the New South Wales and Queensland border; the A71 shield to Charleville; [3] and then to its northern terminus with the Landsborough Highway at Augathella, the Mitchell concurrently carries the A71 and Alt A2 shields. [4]

Highway shield Sign denoting the route number of a highway

A highway shield or route marker is a sign denoting the route number of a highway, usually in the form of a symbolic shape with the route number enclosed. As the focus of the sign, the route number is usually the sign's largest element, with other items on the sign rendered in smaller sizes or contrasting colors. Highway shields are used by travellers, commuters, and all levels of government for identifying, navigating, and organising routes within a county, state, province, or country. Simplified highway shields often appear on maps.

Bathurst, New South Wales City in New South Wales, Australia

Bathurst is a country town in the Central Tablelands of New South Wales, Australia. It is about 200 kilometres (120 mi) west-northwest of Sydney and is the seat of the Bathurst Regional Council. Bathurst is the oldest inland settlement in Australia and had a population of 36,801 at June 2018.

Nyngan Town in New South Wales, Australia

Nyngan is a town in the centre of New South Wales, Australia, in the Bogan Shire local government area within the Orana Region of central New South Wales. At the 2011 census, Nyngan had a population of 2,073 people. Nyngan is situated on the Bogan River between Narromine and Bourke, on the junction of the Mitchell Highway and Barrier Highway, 583 km north-west of Sydney by road. The Barrier Highway starts at Nyngan, and runs west to Cobar and on through Wilcannia and Broken Hill into South Australia.

History

Initially an amalgam of trunk routes, the 1,105-kilometre (687 mi) [5] Mitchell Highway was proclaimed a state highway in New South Wales in 1928 and named as the North Western Highway. [6] On 9 October 1936 the name was changed to the Mitchell Highway, in honour of Lieutenant Colonel Sir Thomas Mitchell, who was Surveyor-General of New South Wales in the 1820s and explored much of inland New South Wales, Victoria and Queensland. [7]

Lieutenant colonel, is a rank in the British Army and Royal Marines which is also used in many Commonwealth countries. The rank is superior to major, and subordinate to colonel. The comparable Royal Navy rank is commander, and the comparable rank in the Royal Air Force and many Commonwealth air forces is wing commander.

Thomas Mitchell (explorer) Scottish surveyor and explorer in Australia

Lieutenant Colonel Sir Thomas Livingstone Mitchell, surveyor and explorer of south-eastern Australia, was born at Grangemouth in Stirlingshire, Scotland. In 1827 he took up an appointment as Assistant Surveyor General of New South Wales. The following year he became Surveyor General and remained in this position until his death. Mitchell was knighted in 1839 for his contribution to the surveying of Australia.

Route

The Mitchell Highway lies west of the Great Dividing Range and in New South Wales runs generally northwest–southeast and in Queensland, runs generally north–south in the central western and southwest parts of that state.

Great Dividing Range mountain range in the Australian states of Queensland, New South Wales and Victoria

The Great Dividing Range, or the Eastern Highlands, is Australia's most substantial mountain range and the third longest land-based range in the world. It stretches more than 3,500 kilometres (2,175 mi) from Dauan Island off the northeastern tip of Queensland, running the entire length of the eastern coastline through New South Wales, then into Victoria and turning west, before finally fading into the central plain at the Grampians in western Victoria. The width of the range varies from about 160 km (100 mi) to over 300 km (190 mi). The Greater Blue Mountains Area, Gondwana Rainforests, and Wet Tropics of Queensland World Heritage Areas are located in the range.

From its northern terminus at a junction with the Landsborough Highway near Augathella, the Mitchell Highway heads south, concurrently carrying both the A71 and Alt A2 shields and continues south through Charleville where the Warrego Highway heads east, carrying the Alt 2 shield. As the A71, the Mitchell continues south through Cunnamulla, forming a junction with the Balonne Highway, and then south to the state border between Queensland and New South Wales where its highway shield changes to B71. [5] [3] [4]

Approximately 5 kilometres (3 mi) north of Bourke it crosses the Darling River before heading into Bourke where it forms junctions with the Kamilaroi Highway heading east and the Kidman Way heading south. From this point the highway generally heads southeast through Nyngan where it forms a junction with the Barrier Highway. From this point until its southern terminus, the Mitchell carries the National Highway A32 shield. At Nevertire the Mitchell forms a junction with the Oxley Highway, before passing through Narromine and then heads generally east to the major rural centre of Dubbo where it meets with the Newell Highway and connects to the Golden Highway before crossing the Macquarie River and heading south towards Wellington, again crossing the Macquarie River. At Molong the Mitchell generally starts to head east towards Orange, where an alternative route diverts many heavy vehicles away from the city centre. The portion of the Mitchell Highway that passes through Orange city centre is known as Summer Street. [8] The Mitchell Highway's southeastern terminus is at a roundabout in Bathurst, at the junction of the Mid-Western Highway to Cowra and the Great Western Highway to Sydney via the Blue Mountains. [5] [6] [2]

Major intersections

StateLGALocationkm [5] miDestinationsNotes
Queensland Murweh Augathella 00.0AUS Alphanumeric Route A2.svg Landsborough Highway (National Highway A2 northwest)  Barcaldine, Longreach, Cloncurry
AUS Alphanumeric Route A2.svg Landsborough Highway (National Highway A2 southeast)  Morven, Roma, Dalby, Toowoomba
Route northern terminus;
Northern concurrency terminus AUS Alphanumeric Route ALTA2.svg
Charleville 7848AUS Alphanumeric Route ALTA2.svg Warrego Highway (National Highway Alt A2 east)  Morven, Roma, Dalby, Toowoomba Southern concurrency terminus AUS Alphanumeric Route ALTA2.svg
Paroo Cunnamulla 278173 Bulloo Developmental Road (west)  Lake Bindegolly National Park
282175Australian state route 49.svg Balonne Highway (State Route 49 east)  St George, Dalby
New South Wales New South Wales – Queensland
state border
397247New South Wales – Queensland state borderNorthbound transition as AUS Alphanumeric Route A71.svg
Southbound transition as New South Wales alphanumeric route B71.svg
Darling River 528328Gateway Bridge
Bourke Bourke 533331New South Wales alphanumeric route B76.svg Kamilaroi Highway (State Highway B76 east)  Brewarrina, Walgett, Narrabri, Gunnedah
534332New South Wales alphanumeric route B87.svg Kidman Way (State Highway B87 south)  Cobar, Hillston, Griffith, Jerilderie
Bogan Nyngan 736457New South Wales alphanumeric route A32.svg Barrier Highway (National Highway A32 west)  Cobar, Wilcannia, Broken Hill, South Australia North-westbound transition as New South Wales alphanumeric route B71.svg
South-eastbound transition as New South Wales alphanumeric route A32.svg
Nevertire 796495New South Wales alphanumeric route B56.svg Oxley Highway (State Highway B56 east)  Warren, Coonabarabran, Tamworth, Port Macquarie
Nevertire-Bogan Road (west)  Tottenham, Tullamore
Narromine Narromine 863536Peak Hill Road (south)  Peak Hill, Parkes Roundabout
Dubbo Dubbo 901560New South Wales alphanumeric route A39.svg Newell Highway (National Highway A39 north)  Gilgandra, Coonabarabran, Moree, Goondawindi;
 connects at Dubbo to New South Wales alphanumeric route B84.svg Golden Highway (B84 east)  Dunedoo, Denman, Newcastle
New South Wales alphanumeric route A39.svg Newell Highway (National Highway A39 south)  Parkes, West Wyalong, Narrandera, Finley, and then to Victoria
Roundabout
Macquarie River 902560 L H Ford Bridge
Macquarie River951591Bridge over the river (unknown name) at Wellington
Cabonne Molong 1,018633New South Wales alphanumeric route B81.svg Peabody Road (B81 south) to the New South Wales alphanumeric route B81.svg Escort Way (B81 south)  Canowindra, Cowra
Orange Orange 1,049652Northern Distributor Road (northeast)Alternative route to bypass Orange city centre; Roundabout
1,052654Escort Way (west)  Eugowra, Forbes
1,057657Northern Distributor Road (northwest)Alternative route to bypass Orange city centre
Bathurst Bathurst 1,105687New South Wales alphanumeric route A32.svg Great Western Highway (National Highway A32 east)  Lithgow, Katoomba, Sydney
New South Wales alphanumeric route A41.svg Mid-Western Highway (State Highway A41 southwest)  Cowra, West Wyalong, Hay
Route south-eastern terminus;
Roundabout
1.000 mi = 1.609 km; 1.000 km = 0.621 mi

Truck explosion

On 5 September 2014, a truck travelling on the Mitchell Highway rolled off a road bridge at Angellala Creek approximately 30km south of Charleville ( 26°39′15″S146°10′34″E / 26.6541°S 146.1760°E / -26.6541; 146.1760 ). The truck was carrying 52 tonnes of ammonium nitrate which exploded. The blast destroyed the two road bridges and severely damaged the adjacent rail bridge. [9] The blast was so powerful that the truck was disintegrated and the dangers posed by the remaining ammonium nitrate necessitated a 2km exclusion zone around the site for a number of days. [10] The large crater formed by the blast closed the highway necessitating detours of up to 600km. [11] The Department of Transport and Mains Road was allowed to commence work at the site on 13 September and by 23 September had constructed a temporary side track around the blast site suitable for cars, buses and light trucks. By 7 October, the side track had been upgraded to support road trains, ending the need to detour. [12] In April 2015, the $10 million tender to reconstruct the highway and bridges were awarded and the construction work took place between June and November 2015. [13] In early 2016, a competition was held to decide a new name for the bridge. [12]

See also

Related Research Articles

<i>Charleville, Queensland</i> Town in Queensland, Australia

Charleville is a town and a locality in the Shire of Murweh, Queensland, Australia. In the 2016 census, Charleville had a population of 3,335 people.

Newell Highway highway in New South Wales

The Newell Highway is a national highway in New South Wales, Australia. The route is currently signed as the A39, however before 2013 was signed as National Highway 39. The Newell Highway is an important road link for freight between Queensland and Victoria and regional centres in western NSW. At 1,058 kilometres (657 mi) in length, the Newell is the longest highway in New South Wales, and passes through fifteen local government areas.

Sturt Highway Australian national highway in New South Wales, Victoria, and South Australia

The Sturt Highway is an Australian national highway in New South Wales, Victoria, and South Australia. The Sturt Highway is an important road link for the transport of passengers and freight between Sydney and Adelaide and the regions situated adjacent to the route.

Cunnamulla Town in Queensland, Australia

Cunnamulla is a town and a locality in the Shire of Paroo, Queensland, Australia. It is 206 kilometres (128 mi) south of Charleville, and approximately 750 kilometres (470 mi) west of the state capital, Brisbane. In the 2016 census, Cunnamulla had a population of 1,140 people.

Warrego Highway highway in Queensland

The Warrego Highway is located in southern Queensland, Australia. It connects coastal centres to the south western areas of the state, and is approximately 715 km in length. It takes its name from the Warrego River, which is the endpoint of the highway. The entire highway is part of the National Highway system linking Darwin and Brisbane: formerly National Highway 54, Queensland began to convert to the alphanumeric system much of Australia had adopted in the early-2000s and is now designated as National Highway A2.

Cunningham Highway highway in Queensland

The Cunningham Highway is a 327-kilometre (203 mi) national highway located in south-eastern Queensland, Australia. The highway links the Darling Downs region with the urbanised outskirts of Ipswich via Cunninghams Gap.

Kidman Way highway in New South Wales

The Kidman Way is a state rural road in the western Riverina and western region of New South Wales, Australia. The 644-kilometre (400 mi) highway services the Murrumbidgee Irrigation Area and outback communities and links the Newell Highway with the Sturt, Mid-Western, Barrier, Mitchell and Kamilaroi highways. The road carries the State Route B87 shield for its entire route, with its northern terminus at Bourke and its southern terminus at a junction with the Newell Highway, situated 16 kilometres (10 mi) north of Jerilderie. The Kidman Way is fully sealed and is accessible by two or four-wheel drive.

Morven, Queensland Town in Queensland, Australia

Morven is a town and a locality in the Shire of Murweh, Queensland, Australia. In the 2016 census, Morven had a population of 199 people.

Nive River (Queensland) river

The Nive River is a river that is part of the Darling catchment within the Murray–Darling basin, is located in the south west region of Queensland, Australia.

Western railway line, Queensland

The Western railway line is a narrow gauge railway, connecting the south-east and south-west regions of Queensland, Australia. It commences at Toowoomba, at the end of the Main Line railway from Brisbane, and extends west 810 km to Cunnamulla, passing through the major towns of Dalby, Roma and Charleville, although services on the 184 km section from Westgate to Cunnamulla have been suspended since 2011. Queensland was the first railway operator in the world to adopt narrow gauge for a main line, and this remains the system wide gauge.

Sommariva, Queensland Suburb of Shire of Murweh, Queensland, Australia

Sommariva is a locality in the Shire of Murweh, Queensland, Australia.

Angellala Rail Bridge railway bridge in Sommariva, Queensland

Angellala Rail Bridge is a heritage-listed railway bridge on the Roma-Cunnamulla railway line over Angellala Creek in Sommariva in the Shire of Murweh, Queensland, Australia. It was designed by Henry Charles Stanley and built from c. 1885 to 1994. It was added to the Queensland Heritage Register on 21 October 1992.

Bakers Bend Suburb of Shire of Murweh, Queensland, Australia

Bakers Bend is a locality in the Shire of Murweh, Queensland, Australia. In the 2016 census, Bakers Bend had a population of 28 people.

Landsboroughs Blazed Tree (Camp 69)

Landsborough's Blazed Tree is a heritage-listed blazed tree at Mitchell Highway, Bakers Bend, Shire of Murweh, Queensland, Australia. It was marked by William Landsborough. It was added to the Queensland Heritage Register on 18 June 2009.

Landsboroughs Blazed Tree (Camp 67) tree at Mitchell Highway, Charleville, Shire of Murweh, Queensland, Australia

Landsborough's Blazed Tree is a heritage-listed tree at Mitchell Highway, Charleville, Shire of Murweh, Queensland, Australia. It was marked by William Landsborough. It was added to the Queensland Heritage Register on 18 June 2009.

The Warrego Way is an Australian road route from Brisbane to Birdsville in Queensland. Using the Warrego Way, it is 1578 km from Brisbane to Birdsville. The recommended journey time, allowing for some sightseeing, food and rest is 48 hours. It has been designated by the Queensland Government as a State Strategic Touring Route.

The Matilda Way is an Australian road route from Bourke, New South Wales to Karumba in Queensland. It has been designated by the Queensland Government as a State Strategic Touring Route.

References

  1. Sinclair Knight Merz Pty Ltd (June 2007). "Sydney–Dubbo Corridor Strategy: Building our National Transport Future" (PDF). Auslink . Australia: Department of Transport and Regional Services. ISBN   978-1-921095-46-7. Archived from the original (PDF) on 20 March 2015. Retrieved 4 April 2015.
  2. 1 2 Rands, Paul (7 December 2013). "Great Western Highway, Mitchell Highway & Barrier Highway (A32)". Road Photos & Information: Queensland. Archived from the original on 10 April 2015. Retrieved 4 April 2015.
  3. 1 2 Rands, Paul (2015). "Mitchell Highway (A71)". Road Photos & Information: Queensland. Archived from the original on 10 April 2015. Retrieved 4 April 2015.
  4. 1 2 Rands, Paul (2015). "Warrego Highway & Mitchell Highway (Alternate A2)". Road Photos & Information: New South Wales. Archived from the original on 10 April 2015. Retrieved 4 April 2015.
  5. 1 2 3 4 Google (4 April 2015). "Driving directions Mitchell Highway" (Map). Google Maps . Google. Retrieved 4 April 2015.
  6. 1 2 "Mitchell Highway (NSW)". OzRoads: The Australian Roads website. Archived from the original on 25 July 2008. Retrieved 14 August 2008.[ self-published source ]
  7. "Mitchell Highway: History and Development". OzRoads: The Australian Roads website. Archived from the original on 24 September 2015. Retrieved 4 April 2015.[ self-published source ]
  8. "Summer Street Commercial Area" (PDF). Orange City Council. Archived from the original (PDF) on 22 July 2008. Retrieved 14 August 2008.
  9. "Queensland Disaster Committee Management 2014-15 Management Report" (PDF). Queensland Government. p. 7. Archived (PDF) from the original on 22 December 2016. Retrieved 5 September 2016.
  10. "Truck hauling fertiliser explodes in outback Queensland, injuring 8". Australian Broadcasting Corporation. 7 September 2014. Archived from the original on 29 October 2016. Retrieved 5 September 2016.
  11. Calligeros, Marissa (23 September 2016). "Dirt road opens to Charleville after Mitchell Highway truck explosion". Brisbane Times . Archived from the original on 5 January 2017. Retrieved 5 September 2016.
  12. 1 2 "Angellala Bridge reconstruction works". Department of Transport and Main Roads. Queensland Government. Archived from the original on 13 September 2016. Retrieved 5 September 2016.
  13. Howells, Melinda (22 April 2016). "Angellala Creek bridge, destroyed in outback Queensland truck explosion, to be ready by November". Australian Broadcasting Corporation. Archived from the original on 14 July 2016. Retrieved 5 September 2016.