Hay Street Bridge to have clearance increased

The Hay Street Bridge has been hit nine times in the past five years. Photo: Leah D, via The Bell Tower Times
The Hay Street Bridge has been hit nine times in the past five years. Photo: Leah D, via The Bell Tower Times

THE State Government has announced it will be increasing the clearance of the 50-year-old Hay Street Bridge over the Mitchell Freeway after data revealed it has been hit 20 times by trucks.

This also includes nine hits in the past five years by unauthorised over-height vehicles, with the most recent incident in August 2018.

“As most Perth road users would be aware, there are very significant safety risks and traffic delays caused by unauthorised over height-vehicles hitting the Hay Street Bridge when travelling southbound on Mitchell Freeway,” Transport Minister Rita Saffioti said.

“Lane closures are sometimes required to clean up resulting debris and to assess potential bridge damage and this leads to heavy traffic congestion for long periods of time, which causes frustration for all road users.”

The Hay Street Bridge was constructed in 1968 and complied with bridge height clearance standards of the day, however, it is now considered a low-height clearance structure.

The government is calling for expressions of interest to undertake the $6 million improvement project.

“The expressions of interest will help Main Roads establish an alliance contract to progress the agency’s preliminary plans for improving the bridge clearance,” Ms Saffioti said.

“Given the complex nature of these works, as well as the location, there will be substantial impacts for road users and the wider community when works are undertaken.

“Main Roads and its alliance partner will explore all opportunities to minimise these impacts, and will work closely with stakeholders during the development of the design and construction.”

Construction timing will depend on the outcome of the expressions of interest process, however, it will likely start in late 2020.