Source: New Zealand Transport Agency
Bayfair is the centre of activity for the Bay Link project as the southern ramp of the Bayfair flyover takes shape, rising up out of the ground.
Waka Kotahi NZ Transport Agency Regional Manager Infrastructure Delivery, Jo Wilton, says once operational, the Bayfair flyover will improve safety and accessibility by separating local motorists from state highway traffic and the rail corridor.
“The Bayfair flyover is the most complex structure on the Bay Link project. Modifying it from the original three-span to a four-span bridge to allow for the underpass required a significant amount of redesign.
“Once this flyover is complete, it will transform how people are able to move through the area.”
Similar to the Hewletts Road flyover, there will be a lane in each direction, separating heavy vehicles heading to the Port from local traffic.
“When designing the flyover, some key considerations were accessibility to the shopping centres and providing a separate, streamlined freight route from the Tauranga Eastern Link, while improving walking and cycling connections.
“In addition to the flyover lanes, there will be two ground level, grade-separated lanes either side of the flyover to enable flow of local traffic, providing a total of three lanes in each direction.”
Located in the middle of State Highway 2 immediately south of the Bayfair roundabout, the southern ramp is one of many components of the flyover. Its construction began in July, following completion of ground improvement work in and around the Bayfair roundabout earlier this year.
“To help people visualise what the Bay Link site, including the Bayfair area, will look like at completion, an animated video is available showing updated construction sequencing through to the end of the project,” says Ms Wilton.
The Bay Link project team is currently constructing the southern ramp’s retaining walls, including the load-bearing wall that will support the southern abutment of the Bayfair flyover bridge. It is built of layers of pumice interlaced with steel tiebacks anchoring the concrete block wall face.
The first stage of the southern ramp (retaining walls and embankment) is expected to be completed this summer and will be followed by a settlement period. This allows the ground to settle after the embankment has been constructed, a process which is expected to take around three months. Once the majority of settlement has occurred, bridge beams will be placed between the embankment and the adjacent bridge pier (which was completed earlier this year).
During the settlement period, construction will also commence on two further bridge piers for the flyover.
The Bay Link project will improve safety, access and pedestrian and cycling connections between Baypark and Bayfair. For more information about the Bay Link project and to subscribe to updates, visit the Bay Link web page.
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