Collingullie farmers and local residents say the indefinite closure of Mundowy lane is causing havoc for them and residents of surrounding villages.
The 7.5km stretch of road between the Sturt Highway and Old Narrandera road has been closed since flooding started in September and locals say they've had no indication from Wagga council as to when it might reopen.
The lane crosses both Beavers Creek and the Murrumbidgee River and is a main thoroughfare for motorists travelling from the likes of Ardlethan and Coolamon, to Victoria.
Rerouting drivers through Wagga has meant business has slowed in Collingullie, according to Collingullie progress association president Russ Meyers.
"It has had a terrible effect on the village, the store and the hotel obviously ... while the Narrandera Road was closed and with Mundowy closed there was no through traffic," he said.
Manager of the Gullie store Yash Patel said business was affected severely when both Mundowy Lane and the Sturt Highway were closed last year. But business is still slower than pre-flooding, he said, with the deli now taking around $1000 a day - down from over $2000.
The diversion is having the biggest effect on local farmers.
One farmer, who wished to remain anonymous, lives in Collingullie but has properties on the other side of Munday lane and has to travel through Wagga to get to his land, putting an extra two hours of travel onto his day.
"It has no water over it for about eight weeks ... all [council] had to do was fill some potholes in and put 60km signs so people slow down, it would have been right to go, but they haven't been near it," they said.
A Wagga City Council spokesperson told the Daily Advertiser: "The road is expected to reopen by the end of January 2023, weather permitting."
"The road needs to be replaced because traditional hot mix and jet patching maintenance is not enough to fix the major potholes," they said.
But Currawarna contractor James Wild questions why it is taking so long. He leases land in and around the area and he said the lane closure is costing him time and money.
"It's adding hours ... machinery is hard to manoeuvre through town ... it's slowing the process of everything," he said.
"Employees wages, diesel, time, kms on vehicles ... I'm adding 40 kms or whatever to the freight because we've got to go right around."
The travel around the area through Wagga is arduous and he often has to take his 4.5 metre wide header across the Gobbagombalin bridge, to the annoyance of locals.
"So, we've got to try and block the bridge and all the traffic, which ... there's some pretty aggressive people down there," he said.
"Why hasn't the council just come and chucked a bit of gravel in the holes and graded it and opened the road to just local traffic, open it up to people who really need it.
"It will save people around here a lot of time and money."
A number of Wagga roads are in line for rehabilitation over the summer months, according to Wagga council.
"Over the coming weeks, works are scheduled to be carried on Macleay St, Inglewood Road, Copland Street, Lloyd Road, Nagle Street, Watson Boulevard and Bourke Street," the spokesperson said.
"These roads have required frequent heavy patching and pothole restoration. They are no longer suitable for resealing. Road rehabilitation is the best option to extend pavement's lifecycle. "
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