New precast facility for bridge construction

Fifteen-metre-wide concrete bridge segments weighing up to 90 tonnes will be precast at a new purpose-built concrete production facility for the Bridgewater Bridge in Tasmania.

Construction of the $768 million bridge, the state’s largest-ever transport infrastructure project, will operate over the next 18 months. The existing bridge (pictured) was built in 1946, the fourth on the site.

Around 1082 concrete segments weighing between 50 and 90 tonnes and measuring 15 metres wide will be cast from five moulds and stored on site which is around 20 km north of Hobart. Following this they will be transported two kilometres to the bridge’s construction site and lifted into place on the new structure.

The project’s temporary bridge is due to be completed next month and work is underway to build the bridge abutments on the northern and southern shores. The first of 42 concrete bridge piles will be poured in the coming weeks and project completion is slated for 2024.

At peak production, up to five of the bridge’s segments will be produced each day and the facility will employ around 90 people.

Tasmania’s Minister for Infrastructure and Transport, Michael Ferguson, said creating jobs, upskilling workers, and supporting local industry is a key focus of the project, with a quarter of the workforce new to the industry.

The Assistant Federal Minister for Infrastructure and Transport, Carol Brown, said the facility will provide employment for the construction of Bridgewater Bridge as well as opportunities for future Tasmanian projects.

“As well as upskilling Tasmanian workers, the project will support more than 1,000 direct and indirect jobs and will importantly create more than 250 new jobs.”

About the author

Desi Corbett

Desi is our weekly news journalist and the editor of Concrete in Australia magazine for 10 years. She has been heavily involved in all forms of engineering since 2013; part of a 30-year writing career across a range of subjects and media.