Bridge completes $340m project

Len Brown welcomes walkers to Westhaven

Last updated 14:11 04/12/2012
Len Brown Westhaven Bridge

THUMBS UP: Mayor Len Brown at the new Westhaven Bridge.

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Auckland Mayor Len Brown has placed the final panels on a $7.9m footbridge for pedestrians and cyclists across the motorway at Westhaven.

The Jacobs Ladder footbridge, the final piece of work in the $340m Victoria Park Tunnel project, will open on December 15 after final safety checks are made.

The covered walkway will provide access between St Marys Bay and the Westhaven Marina across eight lanes of State Highway 1.

NZTA spokesman Steve Mutton said workers wanted to finish the bridge before Christmas to thank the community for their support during the tunnel's construction    

Work on the footbridge was stopped last January after fine lines known as crazing were found in 11 of the 306 acrylic panels used to clad it, but there was no risk to safety, Mutton said.

"We do know that the crazing is confined to a small number of the panels, it has not deteriorated in the past 10 months, and tests show that the panels have retained their strength. Testing confirms that there is no safety risk to either pedestrians or cyclists using the footbridge, or to drivers."

NZTA resumed work on the footbridge in October.

The footbridge brings to a close the $340m Victoria Park Tunnel project - the first of the Government's roads of national significance to be completed.

The project included a new three-lane motorway tunnel, reconfigured the Victoria Park viaduct, and widened the motorway through St Marys Bay.

The project also improved access through St Marys Bay for walkers and cyclists, and Jacobs Ladder on the steep St Marys Bay cliffs was replaced.

"The motorway section of this project has been a huge success, and we now hope cyclists and walkers will get the same value from the restoration of this traditional link to the Waitemata Harbour," Mutton said.

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