The last of the summer construction blitz is wrapping up tonight with all of the major disruptive works completed on the West Gate Freeway, Shepherd Bridge in Footscray and the Tullamarine Freeway as part of the CityLink Tulla Widening Project.
To mark the milestone, Minister for Roads Luke Donnellan, Senator Jane Hume and Member for Essendon Danny Pearson today visited English Street bridge, which was demolished and-re-built in only 23 days.
From midnight tonight, drivers and pedestrians will again be able to cross English Street bridge to get to Essendon Fields and Airport West using three traffic lanes in each direction and a pedestrian path on the northern side.
Constructions crews will continue to work over the next few months to put the finishing touches on the new bridge.
Since the bridge closed on January 3, excavators, concrete breakers and steel cutters were used to demolish the old bridge and remove 1600 tonnes of steel and rubble. Fifteen, 38 metre long beams were then lifted into place by giant cranes.
Once completed the bridge will be open to four lanes in each direction and include a shared user path for pedestrian and cyclists on each side to increase capacity between the growing Essendon Fields and Airport West areas.
The finishing touches for the English Street bridge are expected by mid-2017, with the CityLink Tulla Widening project to be completed by mid-2018.
The $1.28 billion CityLink Tulla Widening Project is funded by the Commonwealth Government, Victorian Government and Transurban.
Quotes attributable to the Minister for Roads Luke Donnellan
“We’re getting these vital works done and we’ve seen a fantastic response from the community while the Tulla was closed with delays much lower than anticipated.”
“Drivers will save on average 16 minutes in the morning peak and 17 minutes in the afternoon peak.”
Quotes attributable to Jane Hume Senator for Victoria
“We’d like to thank drivers and the community for their patience while we completed these essential works safely.”
“The new English Street Bridge allows for an additional lane to be added in each direction to the Tullamarine freeway.”
Quotes attributable to State Member for Essendon Danny Pearson
“We’re upgrading the Tulla so we can reduce travel times to and from the airport and improve access to Essendon Fields for traders and locals.”