New Ripley Road Bridge Opens To Traffic

New Ripley Road Bridge Opens To Traffic

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1 MAY 2020

The long-awaited new Ripley Road bridge at South Ripley has been opened to all traffic, improving traffic flows in and around the Providence township.

Just over 12 months after the Ipswich City Council closed the 75-year-old, single lane bridge over concerns about collapse, the main steel structure of the new bridge was craned into place in early April.

About 500 vehicles a day had been using the bridge prior to its closure.

A 220-tonne capacity crane was recently brought in to install two, 22-tonne girders that were constructed offsite to expedite the project’s delivery. The lifts went smoothly and were followed by the installation of smaller cross beams and bridge deck plates.

Replacing the original bridge was necessary because the previous timber structure, built in the 1940s, was at the end of its lifespan.

The bridge was in very poor condition and required a 4T load limit, however some motorists were not adhering to the limit meaning the bridge had to be closed for community safety.

Ipswich City Council Infrastructure and Environment General Manager Charlie Dill said the new interim bridge would have significant benefits for the community.

“Replacing the bridge with a structure of the same length and width was more cost effective than rehabilitating the old one,” he said.

“This interim bridge will provide for the community now and importantly, allow for flexibility into the future.

“Council chose to use a modular, steel bridge design which means that the girders and deck can be reused when future road upgrade works are undertaken in the area and the bridge is ultimately upgraded.

“This will allow the council to repurpose the bridge when the time comes; it might be in a permanent location or another temporary arrangement similar to this one.”

Mr Dill said as well as benefiting motorists, the new bridge was better for the environment.

“The design is single span whereas the previous timber bridge was two spans. This means a set of piles in the centre of the creek have been removed, which improves water flow and removes a potential blockage point in the event of a flood,” he said.

 

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