Warrawee Suspension Bridge

The Latrobe Council issued a Request for Tender for the design and construction of a new pedestrian and cyclist bridge over the Mersey River. The goal was to connect the Warrawee Conservation Area in Latrobe to the trails leading to Kentish and Railton, creating a vital link in the mountain bike trail network and boosting tourism in the region.

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Warrawee Suspension Bridge

Key Personel:

Warrawee Suspension Bridge

From the outset, we knew that this project would require out-of-the-box thinking and careful planning. The existing crossing, a 34-meter trail bridge, was located downstream from the proposed site and would be an unsuitable site for the new bridge due to potential hazards during elevated water levels.

After extensive deliberation of the key environmental requirements, we concluded that the best solution would be a suspension bridge, ensuring compliance with regulations and the project's requirements.

Our team approached the design process with two key factors in mind: environmental preservation and functionality. We aimed to minimise the impact on the surrounding conservation area while delivering a bridge that seamlessly integrated with the mountain bike trail. Through careful planning and consultation with experts, we developed an innovative method of stringing cables across the river, gradually advancing from small ropes to heavier cables. This technique resulted in a flat bridge deck that was perfectly suited for pedestrians as well as mountain bikes.

I would like to thank the team at Bridge Pro Engineering for delivering the Warrawee suspension bridge. The challenge of developing a single-span bridge across a flood-prone river has resulted in the construction of an iconic structure that complements the natural beauty of the nature reserve while providing a safe and accessible connection.
Chris Clark, Project Manager, The Latrobe Council

The Warrawee Suspension Bridge project was not without its challenges. Procuring the main cables coincided with the nesting and breeding season of the endangered wedge-tailed eagle. Additionally, the project faced setbacks due to extended lead times on cables and specialist suspension bridge components, caused by the global impact of COVID-19. Despite these obstacles, open communication with the client, along with acquiring the necessary approvals for an extension of time, allowed us to complete the project to the reviewed deadline seamlessly.

By constructing the longest single-span suspension bridge in Australia, and potentially the Southern Hemisphere, we have not only enhanced our own capabilities but also enhanced the region. The bridge's completion marks a significant milestone in the development of the Wild Mersey Mountain Bike Trails, which are set to consolidate Tasmania's reputation as the mecca of mountain bike riding, nationally and internationally.

Looking beyond the project's success, we see the Warrawee Suspension Bridge as a legacy for the area, and for future generations.

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BridgePro acknowledges the traditional owners of this island, and pays respects to all Tasmanian Aboriginal people past, present and future.