Bridge repair may span six months
by Paul Campbell
Repairs have begun to Mangawhai’s Tomarata/Insley Street Bridge, which is failing due to the corrosion of concrete and damaged reinforcing steel, with four support beams under the bridge in need of replacement.
Kaipara District Council infrastructure manager, Jim Sephton, said council is working to minimise disruption during repairs.
“We understand the repairs will be inconvenient for some people, and we appreciate their understanding and patience. We’d prefer that visitors coming to Mangawhai from out of town use the Kaiwaka turn-off to avoid the bridge.
The work could continue until March 2020 depending on how much corrosion is found internally in the structure, and the work team was dealing with constraints.
“They are working over water, and there isn’t a lot of room underneath the bridge. We’re not working at night because construction machinery can be noisy and disruptive for the community. We’re striking the best balance we can between getting the job done quickly, ensuring everyone’s safety, and minimising disruption.”
Safety barriers and temporary support beams have been installed on the bridge, and there will be three 48-hour closures in mid-October, mid-December and late January.
The bridge will be open at other times, but traffic management will be in place, and motorists should expect delays. During the closures, local light traffic will be diverted along Cames Road. Security will be in place to ensure heavy vehicles do not use Cames Road.
Heavy traffic will be diverted along State Highway 1 and the Kaiwaka-Mangawhai Road, and council is planning with the New Zealand Transport Agency (NZTA) to manage traffic flows during the busy summer period.
Pedestrians can cross the bridge but may occasionally have to be escorted for safety reasons.