Work has commenced on the Cam River Bridge in Tasmania following the contract being awarded to VEC Civil Engineering in July.
Concrete piles are already being installed under the $18.8 million contract in Somerset where the replacement bridge will form part of the Bass Highway for the Cooee to Wynyard Upgrades Program.
Geotechnical investigations in the river bed were conducted in September last year, with the results and feedback from community consultation informing the final design.
The project comprises wider lanes and shoulders on the bridge as well as a pedestrian pathway under the bridge, and new signals for the junction of the Murchison and Bass Highways to improve traffic flow.
According to the Tasmania Government the existing bridge will be demolished once the new bridge is in operation. State Infrastructure Minister Michael Ferguson revealed the new bridge will be much higher and wider than the current structure.
“The design was finalised following public consultation with locals in 2021. The new bridge will be higher, reducing the risk posed by floods,” he said.
Construction of the Cam River Bridge and junction is expected to be completed by early 2024.
Federal Infrastructure Minister Catherine King said the upgrades across Bass Highway are expected to improve road safety and traffic congestion.
“[It will provide] benefits to freight transportation as a key corridor carrying heavy vehicles to and from the Circular Head municipality, the West Coast, the Port of Burnie, and beyond,” she said.