Brunswick Heads’ iconic South Arm Bridge has officially opened following its major timber restoration.
Assistant Minister to the Deputy Prime Minister and Federal Member for Page Kevin Hogan said the bridge’s restoration was jointly funded by the Federal Government under the Bridges Renewal Program and by Byron Shire Council.
“The Bridges Renewal Program supports the upgrading of bridges across the nation which deliver increased productivity and community access,” Mr Hogan said.
“The old timber heritage look and feel of the historic bridge has been retained as much as possible, which included replacement of old, decaying timbers with new or repurposed timbers from previously dismantled bridges in Bangalow.”
“It also enabled access to local beaches, parks, homes, facilities and connection to the town.”
Byron Shire Mayor Simon Richardson said Council was proud of the project.
“The bridge’s restoration was essentially an entire rebuild from the ground up with intense traffic conditions at times, which presented enormous challenges,” Cr Richardson said.
“Not only have we delivered a re-engineered and structurally superior bridge with a much higher load rating for Brunswick Heads and its visitors, the timber features are absolutely beautiful.
“On top of this, what a great recycling story this project has been.”
Thanks to some innovative thinking by Council’s engineers, seasoned hardwood timbers recycled from bridge replacements in Bangalow were used in this upgrade, while new homes for the old South Arm Bridge timbers were found for other Council and community projects around the Shire.
The upgrade of the Brunswick Heads South Arm Bridge included an extensive list of works:
- Posting of all 24 bridge piles using recycle girders from Council’s Bangalow Bridges Replacement Project
- High-strength fibreglass wrapping of every pile
- Replacement of half the girders – all new girders were recycled from the Bangalow ‘Five Bridges Project’
- Replacement of half of the corbels – also recycled from the Bangalow ‘Five Bridges Project’
- Replacement of 80 per cent of headstocks with new milled hardwood
- Replacement of 100 per cent of the deck with new milled hardwood
- Reconstruction of Abutment 1, including posting of four abutment piles (recycled), new headstocks, new back wall, road approach works and rock revetment work
- Existing kerb and safety barrier was removed and reinstalled with some components recycled from the Bangalow ‘Five Bridges Project’ where required
- Completely new engineered connection system across the whole bridge and re-engineering and reshaping of every timber substructure component (new or existing)
- New safer balustrade on the pedestrian walkway which was made using timbers recycled from South Arm Bridge, and refurbishment of the steel cantilevered walkway substructure.
The project was jointly funded, with the Federal Government committing $607,530 and Byron Shire Council committing $607,530.