The new two-lane bridge will be built between Greymouth and the Kumara Junction, 30 metres downstream of the existing single-lane road and rail bridge.
The new bridge will be 250 metres long, 10 metres high and 15 metres wide. The project will see a section of State Highway 6 realigned and an overpass built to take road traffic over the railway line.
A 2.5 metre wide, off-road cycle and pedestrian facility that will link into an existing cycle track will also be built.
The existing bridge will remain in place and will be used solely as a rail bridge. The clip-on cycle and walking bridge will be installed at another yet to be determined site.
This is a Government Accelerated Regional Roading Project (external link) . Fulton Hogan has been awarded the contract for the project. Work is expected to be complete by the end of 2018.
- The new two-lane Taramakau Bridge is a long awaited project for the West Coast that will provide significant improvements for travellers in terms of safety, travel times and journey experience.
- The bridge is on an important route, connecting Greymouth to Christchurch, via Arthurs Pass, and to Hokitika and onwards to Haast and the Otago region.
- The existing single lane bridge causes traffic congestion, with vehicles having to queue to cross the 220 metre long structure.
- The new two-lane bridge means local business operators, freight vehicles and residents will no longer have to wait at each end on their daily commutes.
- The cycle and pedestrian path will link into existing facilities, making it easier and safer to walk and bike around the area.
- The cycle links will play a part in the growing tourism opportunities developing in the West Coast such as the Wilderness Trail.
- Rail traffic will remain on the existing bridge, and this separation of road, rail and cycling/pedestrian traffic will improve both safety and efficiency.