15 December 2021: Auckland Transport and Fulton Hogan teams have celebrated the completion of the 210 metre-long busway bridge over the Tamaki River in East Auckland. Buses will shortly be carrying passengers over the bridge, following completion of the driver familiarisation/training programme on the new Eastern Busway pre-Christmas.
With two bus lanes, a cycleway and a footpath, the bridge is part of the Auckland Transport-led Eastern Busway that will ultimately connect Botany, Pakuranga and surrounding suburbs with the rail network in Panmure. When complete in 2026, travel by bus and train between Botany and Britomart will be possible in 40 minutes, even in rush hour.
Project Manager David McGoey says technical innovation has been a hallmark. The bridge’s pile caps were built from the water rather than, as is traditional, from the land. This was made possible by a Fulton Hogan-designed boat that acted as a prefabricated floating formwork for installing the piles. The bridge structure was then cantilevered in four launch phases, driven out over the river on hydraulic jacks and rollers.
The first bridge built across the river, 156 years ago, also had a touch of ingenuity. It featured a 12-metre swinging span, enabling boats to pass underneath. The mechanics of the swinging span are still on the eastern side of the river – and it leaves you wondering what might be on this site in 156 years time.