Tuesday, May 21, 2024

New name for Rosehill bridge

New commemorative plaques have been unveiled at Bidgee Bidgee Bridge over James Ruse Drive to mark the bridge’s official opening and celebrate its name, as the Parramatta Light Rail Stage 1 testing and commissioning program picks up pace. 

Last month, the first light rail vehicle weighing more than 63 tonnes crossed Bidgee Bidgee Bridge in Rosehill in a significant milestone for the Stage 1 project’s testing and commissioning program.

A Welcome to Country and smoking ceremony served as a fitting tribute to recognise the important Aboriginal heritage of Parramatta as well as the life and legacy of Bidgee Bidgee – a prominent local Aboriginal Elder.

Bidgee Bidgee led the Burramattagal clan of the Dharug people for 20 years and brought different cultures together, helping to shape the area’s history. He was a tracker for Governor Macquarie and was named Chief of the Kissing Point tribe for his work in building a peaceful community.

The bridge name was chosen in 2022 following extensive community consultation and more than 500 name suggestions as well as close engagement with Dharug Aboriginal language specialists.

The official opening ceremony was a ‘full circle’ moment for many of the invited guests who were involved in either the construction or naming of the eye-catching bridge, such as Western Sydney company S&L Steel, which manufactured the steel arch locally before it was assembled in Rosehill and installed in a meticulous overnight operation in 2021.

Bidgee Bidgee Bridge uses Australian-made weathered steel to minimise future maintenance and reduce disruptions to light rail network operations.   

Light rail vehicles zipping across the 64-metre-long bridge – the largest of six new bridges built for the Stage 1 project – will become a common sight for locals with more tests planned ahead of the opening date, which is expected later this year. 

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