Patapinda Bridge Upgrade
A new lease of life for a heritage landmark

Background

The heritage-listed Patapinda Bridge was constructed around 1850 and upgraded to include a new, wider deck and underpinned bridge pier footings in 1927. At that time concrete skirts were also constructed around piers and abutments as underpinning repair and scour protection.

The bridge was suffering degradation due to the effects of age and traffic, and also required the removal and replacement of lead-based coatings for safety reasons.

Scope

The works included:

  • Repairing and reconstructing each pier skirt
  • Repointing and grouting of the stone masonry joints
  • Reconstructing and replacing timber fender planks
  • Removing any lead-based paint and repainting steel beams
  • Implementing scour protection works to prevent erosion
  • Installation of a two stage cofferdam to facilitate masonry and concrete works

Challenges

  • Repairs were carried out as in accordance with the bridge's heritage listing. This required the use of stones and bricks that matched the existing structure; lime putty mortar; and for certain works to be carried out by specialist subcontractors.
  • The existing concrete scour protection around the piers and abutment was not as per design. There was no minimum concrete thickness available to install starter bars. A new reinforcement cage design was issued to provide a complete ring around the stone work piers. The required design changes were cost neutral and saved on time.

Outcomes

The original specification had listed numerous hold points on which Leed's tender program was based. However, after discussions with council, the hold point durations were put aside, leading to an immediate saving in time and overheads.

Savings were also made with the excavation works and rock working platform construction. The excavated rocky material from the river floor was able to be reused by being sieved and cast over the cofferdam walls. The rock was also able to be reused for the stage 2 sheet piling works. This process saved on time and materials.

The project successfully renewed this landmark heritage bridge guaranteeing it will remain an asset to the community for decades to come.

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