Innovation helps Council save thousands on bridge renewal

An innovative bridge renewal technique is helping Council save thousands of dollars on the Selzers Lane Bridge Number Three renewal in Ovens.

It was originally thought the timber bridge would have to be replaced by a concrete structure.

But with the help of Dr Dan Tingley of Wood Research and Development, Council was able to use less-expensive timber on the renewal.

Maintaining ageing bridges has become a burden for north-east Victorian councils in recent times.

Many timber bridges are reaching the end of their useable life and need to be renewed or replaced.

Manager Engineering and Asset Services Andrew Taylor said the technology used on the Selzers Lane Bridge will benefit the community and Council, especially when renewing similar bridges in the Alpine Shire.

“The end result will be a safe and reliable crossing of the Ovens River for the future,” he said.

“By using timber to re-deck the bridge we have found a cost-effective method that will enable us to renew timber bridges at a lower price whilst retaining the timber bridge characteristics.

"This has also been a useful skill-development exercise which will give ratepayers better value for money.

“The deck panels were delivered onto site ready for installation resulting in a faster and easier job.

"Now the bridge will be restored to its original capacity, reducing our annual maintenance costs.”

The renewal, costing $125,000, is being funded by Council and the Federal Government’s Roads to Recovery Fund.

The renewal is expected to be completed by 31 July depending on weather conditions.

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