Cork Av­enue bridge re­opened af­ter re­pairs

The Star Early Edition - - METRO WATCH -

THE Cork Av­enue bridge in Fern­dale, Rand­burg, is fi­nally open to the pub­lic af­ter a six­month, R7.3 mil­lion emer­gency re­con­struc­tion af­ter se­vere floods dam­aged it.

The bridge is now ac­ces­si­ble to all road users, res­i­dents and pedes­tri­ans.

The re­pairs to the bridge form part of the Jo­han­nes­burg Roads Agency’s (JRA) city-wide re­pair and re­ha­bil­i­ta­tion of stormwa­ter drainage sys­tems to en­sure safe and ac­ces­si­ble roads and re­lated in­fra­struc­ture.

The bridge was de­clared un­safe for pub­lic use fol­low­ing heavy rain­fall and flash flood­ing in Jan­uary that de­stroyed the low-ly­ing bridge over the Klein Jukskei River.

“Ear­lier this year, the city was hard hit by ex­ces­sive dam­age to in­fra­struc­ture due to se­vere weather con­di­tions, which ne­ces­si­tated a R103.5 mil­lion emer­gency re­pair in­vest­ment for the re­con­struc­tion and re­ha­bil­i­ta­tion of six city bridges.

“To en­sure pub­lic safety, risk mit­i­ga­tion strate­gies were im­ple­mented to swiftly ad­dress the col­laps­ing Cork Av­enue bridge.

“Fol­low­ing a flood im­pact as­sess­ment, the bridge’s de­mo­li­tion and re­con­struc­tion was pri­ori­tised at R7.3 mil­lion. The project was em­barked upon in early Fe­bru­ary and has taken six months to com­plete,” said mem­ber of the may­oral com­mit­tee re­spon­si­ble for trans­port Nonhlanhla Makhuba.

A site in­spec­tion af­ter the flood dam­age re­vealed the ex­tent of dam­age to the struc­ture. The ex­ist­ing sewer line and other ser­vices were se­verely ex­posed due to ex­ces­sive ero­sion caused by the fail­ure of the stream cross­ing.

Makhuba said that as part of the re­con­struc­tion, a three­me­tre-high gabion wall was es­tab­lished on ei­ther side of the bridge’s stormwa­ter in­let and out­let to sup­port in­creased wa­ter vol­umes; a 12m gabion mat­tress had been in­stalled; de-sil­ta­tion had been car­ried out; and rub­ble and de­bris had been re­moved.

Guardrails and cul­verts had also been re­placed and the JRA had in­creased the vege­ta­tion on the banks to ad­dress soil ero­sion. The re­tain­ing walls had been re­con­structed, and road signs swept away by the stormwa­ter had been re­placed.

“I would like to thank the res­i­dents of Joburg for their pa­tience while we ad­dress the cur­rent prob­lems of stormwa­ter drains flood­ing.

“We are com­mit­ted to build­ing and pre­serv­ing our stormwa­ter in­fra­struc­ture.

“Fur­ther­more, we en­cour­age res­i­dents to con­tinue to re­port any road, traf­fic light or in­fra­struc­ture faults on the JRA’s Find & Fix App,” Makhuba said.

The bridge was de­clared un­safe for pub­lic use af­ter storms

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