Bridges are often admired for their form, view and scale. However, their success is measured via the efficiency of daily operation; how quickly and seamlessly we can crossover.
Constructed of structural steel and reinforced concrete the Auckland Harbour Bridge is recognised as a national landmark, a tourist attraction and a vital artery, connecting people, place and services via its manmade corridors.
The 1.2-kilometre bridge that spans the Waitemata Harbour connects water, telecommunication, power and gas services to the North Shore and beyond. It is a focus point for many Aucklanders with an average of 180,000 vehicles crossovers daily; over sixty-four million a year. During morning peak times, around 200 busses cross the bridge southbound, carrying around 9,000 passengers.
What people often aren’t aware of is the amount of maintenance that is needed to sustain its daily upkeep. Currently, over 25 AHBA asset management staff work on and around the Auckland Harbour Bridge daily.
WSP Opus partnered with Fulton Hogan and TBS Farnsworth in 1998 to create the Total Bridge Services Joint Venture. We've been part of the Auckland Harbour Bridge Alliance since 2012.
Since, WSP Opus and its forbearers have continued a tradition of managing large, significant assets, whilst developing innovative tools and solutions to ensure for future-ready infrastructure.
Our work for the Auckland Harbour Bridge has led to a number of world-first achievements that bridge the gap between future ready, cost-efficient and environmental civic design.
- World First Road Surfacing: Our team of material specialists, environmental engineers and asset managers developed a new, world-first alternative for road surfacing. We applied the new surfacing option to the Auckland Harbour Bridge in 1995. The Auckland Harbour Bridge is the first bridge in the world to apply and adapt this material. Since our work, the AHBA partners have incorporated this roading solution into their Adaptive Management Process.
- World First Quick Set Repair Material: In 2015 Principal Bridge Engineer and Asset Management Engineer, David Ashby developed a world-first quick-set repair material for surface defects. The material was trailed and adapted by the Auckland Harbour Bridge. As a result, the new process has saved time, money and disruption for the ABHA. Its high strength suits the AHBA’s need to provide long-lasting repair at a single application and has reduced the maintenance costs for pot-hole care.
- New Rust and Corrosion Detection Tool: For a bridge to meet regulations, its infrastructure must meet performance criteria’s. Working with our Alliance Partners instigated the development for a world-first rust-scan tool. Our work for Auckland Harbour Bridge posed the question, how do we monitor a steel surface area of 125,000m2? Still in the development stage, our tool has the ability to scan bridges, allowing rust corrosion experts to detect spots of rust and treat controlled area. Thus allowing accurate, reliable and quantitative information regarding a mega structures coating health whilst saving time and maintenance costs.
- Coatings Life Cycle Management Plan: WSP Opus along with our AHBA partners have developed a Coatings Life Cycle Management Plan for the repainting and maintenance of the Auckland Harbour Bridge. The strategy divides the bridge into separate assets, with deep analysis into the atmospheric, chemical and abrasive distresses made to each asset. By identifying the structure as isolated parts, WSP Opus alongside our AHBA partners is able to create tailored asset management solutions for all areas of the Auckland Harbour Bridge.