Cyclone damaged Hikuwai no. 1 bridge to be removed in July


The cyclone-damaged Hikuwai No.1 bridge on State Highway 35 north of Gisborne will be completely dismantled and transported away next month.

The Bailey bridge was opened earlier this month replacing the Hikuwai no. 1 bridge north of Tolaga Bay which was destroyed by Cyclone Gabrielle.

Waka Kotahi Hawke’s Bay / Tairāwhiti System Manager Martin Colditz says the bridge will close at 7am Monday 17 July and reopen at 5am Thursday 27 July.

“During this time, the Pourau Road Bypass will remain open and we’re reminding road users to expect delays and plan their journey.”

“During the closure, the crane will be disassembled and moved to the northern side of the river to remove the existing 31 metre long beams from the old bridge. These beams currently sit upstream from the Bailey bridge and removing them now will remove any risk they may damage the Bailey bridge in future weather events.

“At the same time, crews will complete the surfacing of the approaches at either end of the bridge, making it safer for road users and better able to withstand traffic demands and adverse weather.

“We acknowledge a ten-day closure will be frustrating, especially so soon after opening the bridge. We also want to reiterate our thanks to road users for their support during both the construction period and during the closure, while these works to improve the resilence and reliability of journeys on the East Coast are completed,” says Mr Colditz.