First Otaki river bridge beams placed

1 MinutesBy NZ Trucking magazineOctober 4, 2018

The first of 110, 32.5 metre long bridge beams being placed on the new Otaki River Bridge.

A major project milestone was reached last month when the first new Otaki River Bridge (Bridge 5) beams were placed on the columns that have been constructed on the south bank of the river.

Part of the Peka Peka to Otaki Expressway project, the operation was carried out in three stages over three days to complete the span between piers 5 and 6.

Each beam is 32.5 metres long and weighs approximately 65 tonnes, and the placement was done using Fletcher Construction‘s 250-tonne crane.

Project engineer Harry Singh says a total of 110 beams will be placed to create the bridge.

“We‘ll have 11 per span over the 10 spans, each about 33 metres long. Beams will be placed over one complete span in each operation. All the beams combined make up over 3600 metres in length, almost equalling the height of Mt. Cook or 360 lengths of a rugby field,” said Singh. “Their weight equals that of almost 600 double-decker buses – about 7500 tonnes in total.”

Singh says that while the placement of the beams is not too difficult, the main challenge the team faces is the tight access to the river bank and bringing 110 very long beams off a busy SH1.