The installation of 10 large precast pier sections for a bridge spanning Oakley Creek marks a milestone in the construction of the Waterview Shared Path.
In a major engineering feat, a 450 tonne crane stacked five concrete sections on top of each other to construct two piers of the Alford Street Bridge. There’s one pier each side of Oakley Creek which will support the bridge deck. Lifting took place at night when wind conditions are commonly lighter and much safer to carry out.
At 90 metres long and 16 metres high the Alford Street Bridge is uniquely designed for its site.
It is the largest of the three bridges being built on the shared path which connects Waterview and Mt Albert and is jointly funded by the NZ Transport Agency, Auckland Transport (AT) and Albert-Eden Local Board. It is being delivered as part of the $1.4 billion Waterview Connection project.
“This is an exciting connection that will allow people on foot or bike to safely cross Te Auaunga (Oakley Creek) to access Unitec Campus and local transport hubs,” says the Transport Agency’s Auckland Highway Manager, Brett Gliddon.
“This early milestone is a visible marker that we’re making solid progress to complete this key section of the shared path by early 2017.”
The Waterview Shared Path will open progressively after each bridge is completed with the remaining two bridges, Phyllis to Harbutt Boardwalk and Soljak Place Bridge due to be finished by mid-2017.
“The shared path is a great outcome for the communities that surround it, providing direct, safe routes to nearby parks, sports fields and community facilities. It’s exciting to see it nearly a reality,” says Albert Eden Local Board Member, Margi Watson.
Alford Street Bridge has several distinctive design aspects including its balustrades which will have LED lighting in the handrail to illuminate the bridge at night.
Māori designs from Mana Whenua artists will be added to the bridge piers to reflect the movement of the water in the stream running below.
“The shared path is a safer and easier access route for all people walking and cycling through these local communities and will connect to existing and future cycleways such as the New Lynn to Avondale Shared Path, says Kathryn King, AT’s Cycling and Walking Manager.
The Waterview Shared Path is 3.5 metre wide shared cycling and walking path that follows Oakley Creek between the Alan Wood Reserve in Mt Albert and Great North Rd in Waterview. The shared path includes low hill gradients to make it accessible for people of all abilities.
It will join with other shared paths that are part of the Government’s Urban Cycleway Programme such as the Northwestern Cycleway in the northern (Waterview) end of the Waterview Connection and the New Lynn to Avondale Shared Path and Southwestern Shared Path alongside State Highway 20.