29 August 2019

New Pyramid Bridge construction time shorter than expected

Construction of the new Pyramid Bridge is expected to take considerably less time than previously estimated courtesy of design efficiencies.

Gore District Council Transport Manager Peter Standring said this week construction of the bridge should take about six months from the time preliminary work was completed.

"This is a lot shorter than the 14 month timeframe we initially expected."

The shorter construction period was one of the benefits of the alternative tender, he said. In July this year the contract for the construction of the new Pyramid Bridge was awarded to New Zealand company Concrete Structures (NZ) Ltd.

Mr Standring said there were features of the design that have delivered savings in terms of cost and construction time.

"The design incorporates single piers instead of double, and precast units that will be manufactured elsewhere and transported to the site. These are major efficiencies."

The Gore District Council this week lodged a resource consent application for the new bridge with Environment Southland. The application should take no more than 20 working days to process if there's no further information required, Mr Standring said.

Once consent is granted preliminary work, such as causeway construction and reinforce the existing Otama rural water supply pipeline, will begin.

Mr Standring said features of the new bridge include fewer piers, which will mean less interruption to the flow of the Mataura River and any floating debris, and a new alignment on the eastern approach.

"We have made the approach off Otama Road wider and altered the alignment of the bridge, which will improve visibility and make it safer for traffic turning on to the bridge."

These changes have resulted in the length of the bridge being shortened from about 90 metres to 78 metres, Mr Standring said.

The total construction cost of the project is $3.79million. With the New Zealand Transport Agency providing a 73% subsidy, the cost to the Gore and Southland district councils will be evenly shared and total approximately $530,000 each.

The tender price was considerably lower than the budgeted estimate of $6.8million.

The old Pyramid Bridge collapsed on 2 February 2018 when a build-up of debris caused by flood waters washed away a 50m section of the bridge.

Gore District Council 29 Bowler Avenue Gore P: 03 209 0330 E: