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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
The QLD State Government has moved a step further to duplicate Australia's (or the Southern Hemisphere's) longest Bridge over water:



Redcliffe super bridge costs soar
Tony Moore | June 6, 2007 - 12:35PM


The cost of the new Houghton Highway Bridge at Redcliffe has more than doubled, but the bridge will be the first coastal bridge in Australia made climate-change proof after Hurricane Katrina devastated the southern United States in 2005.

Transport and Main Roads Minister Paul Lucas said changes made during the design process meant the Houghton Highway bridge would now withstand a "one-in-2000 year" storm event.

The existing Houghton Highway, built in 1979, is built to design a "1 in 400-year" flood event.

Main Roads originally costed the project at $149 million in 2004, but yesterday's State Budget confirmed the cost of the new bridge will be $315 million.

Unlike the original plans, the new three-lane Houghton Highway will be built 30 metres to the east - the bayside of the original Houghton Highway - and will be built four metres higher.

Mr Lucas defended the cost increases.

"This bridge was always going to be built - it is too important to the people of Redcliffe and Brisbane not to proceed," Mr Lucas said.

"The new cost is higher than initial estimates. However, on its eastern alignment the new bridge will mean less disruption for motorists, pedestrians and cyclists during construction, as well as reduced construction noise for residents on the northern headland."

Mr Lucas said the Houghton Highway project had been re-designed after engineers were asked to consider the impacts of a Hurricane Katrina-style incident on Queensland projects.

"Hurricane Katrina rewrote the book on designing coastal bridges to withstand waves generated by severe storms," Mr Lucas said.

"It also showed shallow bodies of water, like that crossed by the Houghton Highway bridge, are more subject to storm surge than previously thought.

"Main Roads advises me the new Houghton Highway bridge is the only coastal bridge that could be affected in a Katrina-type event. However, it is asking its design consultants to share relevant information with other infrastructure agencies."

All private land for the project has been acquired and bridge works will begin late this year. The new bridge will open by the end of 2009. Work on the existing Houghton Highway, including resurfacing, will start once the new bridge is complete. All work will be complete by the end of 2010.

The new bridge has a 4.5m wide pedestrian and cycle path, which connects with existing cycle networks on either side of Bramble Bay, and a fishing platform near the Pine River channel.

The new three-lane bridge will be 2.7km long and have two general traffic lanes and a transit lane.

Mr Lucas said increases in the cost of construction materials and labour; changes to the scope of the project following technical investigations and community consultation; extra costs associated with the removal of the Hornibrook bridge; as well as changes to reflect post-Katrina findings, meant the total project cost would be $315 million, compared with the $149 million estimated in 2004.

A spokesman for Mr Lucas said infrastructure costs -including labour and cement - were now increasing at 15 per cent a year.

The project will be on display for public comments from the end of this month.

Redcliffe Mayor Allan Sutherland and local councillor Jim Houghton were unavailable for comment this morning.
 

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GumbyWench
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272 Posts
Interesting - I thought that the initial plan was to have the new bridge inbetween the two current ones? I can't wait to see how the bridges end up connecting to the current roads (Elizabeth Ave & Hornibrook Esp) on the Redcliffe side.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
^^Yeah that was the initial plan, I think, because they want it to handle storm surges, the stronger newer bridge, being east of the older bridge, would take most of the force of most disasters.
 

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Interesting - I thought that the initial plan was to have the new bridge inbetween the two current ones? I can't wait to see how the bridges end up connecting to the current roads (Elizabeth Ave & Hornibrook Esp) on the Redcliffe side.
Visit the MR site for more info about this.
 

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Premium Member
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Thanks for all the info and pictures. If only they were including rail as well.

Some 2006 pics to show the size of the crossing.







 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Light rail from Shorncliffe would be interesting!
 

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GumbyWench
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272 Posts
Cheers for that, Trent and BrizzyChris. I should've checked out the MR site. I emailed one of the guys working on the project there a little while back, and he was supposed to be emailing me further details about this when it surfaced, but I guess that was overlooked.
 
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