26/11/2021 | Corey Wingard MP | Better Services

Work to fix one of Adelaide’s most frustrating traffic bottlenecks is powering ahead with the first bridge girders for the $196 million Ovingham Level Crossing Removal Project lifted into place.

Massive 100 tonne steel girders to support the road-over-rail bridge have begun to be installed as part of works to eliminate the level crossing on Torrens Road – a project that’s also supporting 265 full time jobs per year during construction.

The first of 16 bridge girders has been craned into place this week with the remainder to be installed over the coming months.

Federal Minister for Communications, Urban Infrastructure, Cities and the Arts, the Hon Paul Fletcher MP, said the Morrison Government was providing funding for the project through the Urban Congestion Fund.

“The Morrison Government is getting on with delivering infrastructure projects that improve congestion and safety for commuters across Australia, making it easier for them to move around our capital cities and ensuring they get home quickly and safely,” Minister Fletcher said.

“Under the Urban Congestion Fund, we are delivering 182 packages of work nationwide. The total number of projects that are now completed or underway nationwide is 76. By the end of 2022, more than 80 per cent of all packages are expected to be completed or under construction.

“This is just the latest example of us delivering on our commitment to progress critical infrastructure projects across the country under our record $110 billion, 10-year infrastructure investment pipeline, which is helping to drive Australia’s economic recovery.”

South Australia’s Minister for Infrastructure and Transport Corey Wingard said the installation is a major milestone as the project continues.

“We’ve already seen ten bridge piers constructed and now these girders will really see the structure start to take shape,” Minister Wingard said.

“An average of 21,300 vehicles pass through this level crossing each day with the boom gates at Torrens Road previously down for approximately 22 per cent of the time during the combined AM and PM peak periods.

“The project will result in a road bridge over the Gawler and Australian Rail Track Corporation Freight train lines, with improvements also being made to the Churchill Road intersection to improve walkability and create a new community open space.

“Once completed, this will eliminate the wait drivers have had to endure every time a train passes through. It will cut travel times, improve reliability for buses that use Torrens Road, increase freight productivity and most importantly it will improve safety.

“This exciting milestone is yet another demonstration of the Australian and SA governments working together to support jobs and get South Australians home sooner and safer.”

The girders have been constructed by South Australian company Bowhill Engineering. Bowhill also constructed the girders for the Regency Road overpass for the North-South Corridor, Regency Road to Pym Street Project.

Manager Director Jeremy Hawkes said moving the 100 tonne, 50 metre long girders is a major exercise in logistics.

“We have developed good systems on our manufacturing site and great relationships with heavy transport companies that can safely move these large elements along the public roads from Bowhill, over the Murray River at Blanchetown and into Adelaide from the North.”

These projects have allowed the company to hire 10 new apprentices and to invest in upgrades at its plant in the Murray Mallee.

The Ovingham Level Crossing Project is due to be complete in 2023. To find out more, please visit www.dit.sa.gov.au