Local Govt | National News Video | Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Search

 

Temporary Fix For Auckland Harbour Bridge To Start Tomorrow Night

Waka Kotahi NZ Transport Agency is committed to doing everything possible to re-open the centre lanes of the Auckland Harbour Bridge and is working to start installing a temporary fix to the damaged bridge strut on Tuesday night.

At the same time, traffic volume data shows motorists heeded Waka Kotahi advice to avoid using SH1 and the harbour bridge during morning peak hours today. Vehicle movements were also much higher on the alternate Western Ring Route.

Waka Kotahi General Manager Transport Services Brett Gliddon says bridge engineers are making great progress on both a temporary and permanent solution to fix the bridge damage, even though it is a very complex process.

“Waka Kotahi is now confident it has a temporary solution to repair the damaged strut which will allow one extra lane in each direction to be opened on the centre span of the bridge.”

Four lanes on the bridge’s centre span are closed after two trucks were blown over by 127 kph wind gusts on Friday morning, causing significant damage to the bridge superstructure. The bridge operated at 50% capacity over the weekend and this morning with long queues on each side.

Current plans indicate work on the bridge to install the temporary solution will begin overnight on Tuesday 22 September.

“This is a complex undertaking and has never been done before so the bridge team must do extensive testing on the bridge before opening it up to live traffic.”

“This includes mathematical peer review by independent experts which we are doing in parallel to the construction of the temporary piece.”

“Once the temporary fix is in place there will be real life testing with heavy vehicles to ensure it performs to the design specifications and requirements. Only then will a final decision be made about whether the temporary fix is suitable to allow the re-opening of additional lanes.”

“Once that decision has been made it is expected that two extra lanes on the centre-span of the bridge (one northbound and one southbound) could be open up to traffic later this week.”

To enable this to happen, the southbound lanes of the Auckland Harbour Bridge into the city centre will be closed overnight on Tuesday 22 September.

In parallel, the team is working on a permanent repair of the damage to re-open all lanes on the Harbour Bridge, however this work will take some time and is weeks away from installation.

Repair work may not be visible on the bridge however there are teams working to design and peer review the replacement parts for both the temporary and permanent solution, source the materials, manufacture the part and plan for installing it, says Brett Gliddon.

“The bulk of this time is in the design, calculation and peer review of the new strut in relation to how it will impact on the performance of the whole bridge. This includes careful calculations on how to re-balance its load-bearing function.”

The new modelling is necessary because the materials of the new structure will not exactly match those that were installed 60 years ago.

While the damaged component of the structure is important, there is no risk to the structural integrity or overall safety of the Harbour Bridge.

The north and southbound clip-on lanes continue to be safe to use as they have their own supporting structure.

Many motorists avoided the bridge and took the Western Ring Route

Traffic volume data shows nearly 11,000 vehicles from the North Shore crossed the Auckland Harbour Bridge this morning between 6:00AM and 10:00AM. That was 16,000 or 60% less than at the same time last week.

Vehicles heading northbound over the bridge during this time totalled about 11,500 or 30% less than at the same time last week.

Over the weekend Waka Kotahi urged people to consider working from home if possible. We encouraged those who had to travel to leave their cars at home and use public transport. We also advised motorists to use the Western Ring Route, via SH20, SH16 and SH18 as an alternative to SH1 and the bridge.

“This is clearly what has happened and we thank Auckland motorists for the way they have responded to our call,” says Brett Gliddon.

Vehicles travelling southbound on Upper Harbour Drive (SH18) between 6:00AM and 10:00AM totalled 11,600, 53% or 4,000 more than the previous week.

Just over 11,000 vehicles travelled north on Upper Harbour Drive, 14% more than last week.

After 10:30 congestion began to ease across the Auckland network, but at 3:OOPM this afternoon traffic southbound across the bridge is queueing back to Esmonde Road.

Plan ahead for a safe, enjoyable journey. Keep up to date with:

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines


Gordon Campbell: On Why Herd Immunity Isn’t A Valid Option, And What’s With Our Reluctance To Wear Masks?

Herd immunity has recently bounced back into the headlines as a tool for managing Covid-19, and as a supposed alternative to lockdowns. In the US, a group of scientists was recently brought together in the town of Great Barrington, Massachusetts by a think tank funded by the Koch brothers. The assembled scientists signed the so called Barrington Declaration, which promotes herd immunity as a rational means of re-opening US public schools and the economy at large... More>>

 

Gordon Campbell: On National Being Shafted By Its Own Creation

As it licks its wounds, let’s hope the National Party can still find time to look back with some pride at what it has achieved in Epsom. The Act Party’s nationwide success on Saturday night has been a tribute to National’s foresight, and to its ... More>>

ALSO:

Green Party: 'Fruitful Discussions ... Further Discussions To Have'

The Green Party says there is a negotiation going on with the Labour Party, but there are more discussions to be had. More>>

ALSO:


Border: No Changes To Border Exemptions After Fishing Crew Test Covid-19 Positive

The cases were detected after routine day three testing but the immigration minister and air commodore agree there's no need to change border exemptions. More>>

PSA: Labour-Led Government Has Mandate For Transformation, Equality And Transparency

The Public Service Association welcomes the progressive electoral landslide New Zealand voters delivered on Saturday, and the union says its members look forward to implementing policies that reduce poverty and inequality, support affordable housing ... More>>

ALSO:


Stats NZ: New Report Shows Significant Changes To New Zealand’s Climate

Climate change is already happening in New Zealand and could have a profound impact on future generations of New Zealanders, a new report from the Ministry for the Environment and Stats NZ says. Our atmosphere and climate 2020 , released today, includes analysis ... More>>

ALSO:

Judith Collins: Obese People Must Take Responsibility For 'personal Choices'

National Party leader Judith Collins has described obesity as a weakness and says people should not 'blame systems for personal choices'. More>>

Māori Party: Poll Reveals Tamihere On Cusp Of Historic Māori Movement Election Victory

John Tamihere’s election campaign is on the rise and on track to return the Māori Party to parliament, a new Māori TV poll has revealed. The poll released on 11 October during the seventh and final Māori TV Maori Electoral campaign coverage has Tamihere ... More>>

Gordon Campbell: On Four-Year Terms Of Parliament, And On How The US Courts Are Dismantling Democracy

Last week, the issue of four-year parliamentary terms surfaced again. Infuriatingly, it is being discussed purely in terms of its convenience for political parties. They’d get so much more time to enact their policies, free of scrutiny or sanction by voters ... More>>

ALSO:

 
 
 
 
 
 

LATEST HEADLINES

  • PARLIAMENT
  • POLITICS
  • REGIONAL
 
 

InfoPages News Channels