West Gate Bridge Strengthening
Flint & Neill Limited, on behalf of the West Gate Bridge Strengthening Alliance
The iconic 2.6km long West Gate Bridge over the Yarra River is an important part of the Australian national road network. It consists of an 850m long cable-stayed steel box girder with pre-stressed concrete box girder approach viaducts.
This $400m project involved strengthening and widening the bridge from four to five lanes. The work was extremely demanding, both analytically and physically. Design of the strengthening of the steel bridge needed complex non-linear finite element analysis, and the work involved access to very confined spaces. Strengthening of the concrete box girders involved additional external pre-stressing cables, and extensive application of carbon fibres.
"This project is an exemplar of the vital contribution of structural engineering excellence in sustaining and extending the life of our critical aging infrastructure. The diversity of technical, management, environmental and construction challenges faced by the team on this landmark project were simply breath-taking.
Its success is a testament to their structural engineering skill and tenacity. The teams’ ability to build upon engineering first principles and pioneer innovative new strengthening techniques were fundamental to realising the objectives of the project."