The Hunter Expressway is a $1.7billion, 40-kilometre four-lane freeway link between the F3 Freeway near Newcastle, and the New England Highway, at Branxton in the Lower Hunter Valley. ABI Group opted to utilise a range of RMD Australia equipment solutions for the bridge sections of the expressway.
Commenting on the project Mark Stanley, Sales Representative from RMD Australia said: "To meet the requirements of our customer, we supplied a wide range of equipment to this large scale project, including innovative edge protection and access solutions, bridge abutment formwork, falsework and shoring systems, pier and headstock shoring and access equipment.
It also included four cast in-situ voided bridge decks, where over 400 tonnes of Rapidshor, Superslim and Alform beams were employed for the construction of these bridges all at once. We also designed and supplied four 80-metre spans of Paraslim cantilevered system for a steel box-girder bridge, which required a specialised system to access and pour road slab and side forms. The Paraslim system allowed the client to pre-fabricate crane handled shutters off site and transport to bridge where a crane was used to install and remove the bridge girders over the main north train line during track possessions.
"All equipment for the Hunter Expressway Project was sourced from the Australian Branch network and included a range of specially manufactured items. Transport was arranged from the RMD Australia Newcastle Branch and involved around 100 semi-trailer movements. Having worked with ABI Group on a number of similar projects in the past, including on-going Pacific Highway upgrades, we already had a good working relationship with the client who knows the capabilities of the RMD Australia equipment."
The Hunter Expressway is expected to significantly improve the efficiency of the national road network in Australia, providing a major new arterial route between Newcastle and the Upper Hunter Valley. Despite the challenges faced throughout the project, ABI Group has been able to utilise the systems supplied by RMD Australia to progress on schedule.
Discussing the use of RMD Australia material at the site, Senior Project Engineer, Duncan Lambert from ABI Group said: "The RapidShor, SuperSlim Soldiers and Alform Beam provided by RMD Australia have provided us with a cost effective and efficient solution for cast in-situ bridge decks. The wealth of knowledge provided by RMD's engineers, combined with its superior design capabilities, really gave RMD Australia an edge over the competition at the tender stage.
"We have been particularly impressed with its ParaSlim System, which in our view provided the best method for forming and accessing the concrete slabs for steel girder style bridge decks. It is fast and efficient, as well as being suitable for crane lifting, which was important for the rail sections of the expressway, where speed of erection and dismantling was critical. The edge protection security features of its products also ensured the construction team remained safe and comfortable at all times, helping us meet our tight construction deadlines."
Work on the Hunter Expresswaywas completed at the end of 2013.