Concrete piers the last trace of Batemans Bay’s iconic old bridge

Tom McGann 27 September 2021 64
Piers of old Batemans Bay Bridge

The remaining piers of the old Batemans Bay Bridge. Photo: Tom McGann.

The sun is shining and the water is glistening on Clyde River as the John Holland workers continue to dismantle the old Batemans Bay Bridge.

For the most part, the iconic bridge is completely gone. All that remains of the town’s landmark structure is a few piers rising from the water.

After the new bridge was officially opened to the public in March 2021, it took just three weeks for the old bridge to start coming down.

A Transport for NSW spokesperson said each pier comprises a concrete headstock and two concrete caissons, built with a solid concrete plug at the top and bottom, with a voided centre.

READ ALSO: Bidding farewell to the old Bay Bridge and its operators as new structure soars

“To prepare for the bridge removal, Transport for NSW carried out extensive investigation, planning and design,” said the spokesperson.

Safety and environmental measures were also part of the planning process for removing the piers. Ageing structures can have unknown or hidden conditions, and the old Batemans Bay bridge was no exception.

“The preparation work included planning for unknown discoveries during the works,” said the spokesperson. “A team prepares contingency plans, and a team of specialists manage any environmental, safety and design issues.”

One of the previously unknown features that was discovered was high-quality hardwood timber used as the formwork in the old bridge caissons, which workers have found challenging to break through.

The team removed the caissons by using specialist equipment, including a custom-made diamond wire concrete saw that is adjustable to suit the varying caisson sizes.

In order for the deconstruction to run smoothly while keeping the public safe, a marine exclusion zone has been put in place, meaning all non-project vessels must not enter it.

A navigation channel is marked to provide safe passage for vessels through the zone.

Once the piers are removed, they are taken to a designated area on the northern foreshore of Clyde River and the concrete and steel are taken offsite for recycling.

With the old Batemans Bay Bridge nearly entirely gone, residents can look forward to parts of it being turned into a sculpture that will sit by the water’s edge.

READ MORE: Batemans Bay Bridge to be reborn as foreshore sculpture

However, the material from the piers is not being used in the sculpture. Rather, it will be made from steel from the trusses removed from the old bridge.

Transport for NSW says removing the piers is not the final step of dismantling the old bridge.

“Once the nine piers have all been removed, the temporary jetty will be dismantled and the processing area on the northern foreshore will be decommissioned to allow for the planned foreshore upgrade,” said the spokesperson.

Motorists can now drive across all four lanes of the new Batemans Bay Bridge, just in time for holiday traffic towards the end of the year, when tourism will hopefully boom once again in coastal towns on the NSW South Coast following COVID-19 lockdown.

The new bridge has also become a popular walking track, affording spectacular views over the Clyde River and beyond.

Work on dismantling the old bridge will continue until late 2021.

Original Article published by Tom McGann on About Regional.

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64 Responses to Concrete piers the last trace of Batemans Bay’s iconic old bridge
Jane Carvolth Jane Carvolth 10:27 pm 01 Oct 21

Debbie Carvolth please tell me i can still jump off🥺

Mel Saltiel Mel Saltiel 5:50 pm 01 Oct 21

Mark, that’s an iconic run shot gone

Ellie Kennedy Ellie Kennedy 6:48 am 01 Oct 21

Hayden Crockett big walk across the new bridge 😂

    Hayden Crockett Hayden Crockett 7:25 am 01 Oct 21

    Ellie Kennedy may as well do it again to celebrate

Kelly Munn Kelly Munn 11:21 pm 30 Sep 21

Too sad!!

Trent Orchard Trent Orchard 5:20 pm 30 Sep 21

Jillian Rigby-Casey Peta Crossley well there’d be no more sitting under that, drinking and smoking on a Friday night anymore

    Jillian Rigby-Casey Jillian Rigby-Casey 7:03 pm 30 Sep 21

    Trent Orchard Did we use to? lol don't remember that one.. Maybe selective memory tho.... haha

    Jillian Rigby-Casey Jillian Rigby-Casey 8:27 pm 30 Sep 21

    Trent Orchard take ya pick

Manuel Barros Manuel Barros 6:55 am 30 Sep 21

A shame it couldn't be saved for history's sake.

Chris Channells Chris Channells 4:57 am 30 Sep 21

As far as I'm concerned that bridge was a national icon it's bullshit they got rid of it. Oh and it's a static bridge too ? Well done ya muppets, it's bloody discracefull.

planet42 planet42 7:27 pm 29 Sep 21

One summer saw a pelican, on a span of the bridge, do an enormous crap on the back window of the car below, right in front of me. So glad I wasn’t one car ahead.

Daniel Newman Daniel Newman 7:20 pm 29 Sep 21

Emma Catchpole

Belinda Amey Belinda Amey 6:11 pm 29 Sep 21

A little bit sad😔

Spencer Nicholls Spencer Nicholls 5:29 pm 29 Sep 21


Liam Elliot Liam Elliot 4:48 pm 29 Sep 21

Stirling Doyle Sam Hyland Isaac Baz Nathan Kelley jeez that’s adequate

James Hill James Hill 2:00 pm 29 Sep 21

Isobel Dana how wild

John Harding John Harding 1:13 pm 29 Sep 21

Used the old one many a time. Canberra's gateway to the South Coast

Jeffrey Akers Jeffrey Akers 12:26 pm 29 Sep 21

Would have made a gr8 artificial reef & dive attraction

Nick Tsoulias Nick Tsoulias 11:51 am 29 Sep 21

Sad. Now i look at the new bridge without a soul

Gill Kruzins Gill Kruzins 11:25 am 29 Sep 21

Always hoped to sail as far as we could up the Clyde. It can’t happen now thanks to low bridge.

    Nancy Harrison Nancy Harrison 12:50 pm 29 Sep 21

    Gill Kruzins I'm not going to recognise the place!!!

Jenny Stephens Jenny Stephens 11:08 am 29 Sep 21

Gosh that just goes to show how long it's been since I've been able to go down there!

    Fiona Carlisle Fiona Carlisle 5:21 pm 29 Sep 21

    Jenny Stephens January 2019 the last time we were down that way. Missing our beach summer holidays😞

Lucy Grimes Lucy Grimes 11:06 am 29 Sep 21

Maddie Robinson can’t wait to drive over that new bridge ASAP

John Warhurst John Warhurst 10:47 am 29 Sep 21

Can remember climbing down on too them from the bridge

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