Designer SMEC South Africa and construction contractor Stefanutti Stocks Coastal have progressed the work to replace the old swing bridge at the V&A Waterfront that connects the Pierhead and the Clock Tower precincts.
The massive structure that is 42 m long and 4 m wide will need to be craned into position.
The completed bridge will be on site for a crane to hoist it into the air and position it in place by June 18.
Work on the new bridge began in late 2018 and is being undertaken in two construction phases.
Phase 1 was finished in February.
The bridge will be out of commission during Phase 2 – the installation period – which started on May 20.
Although the completed bridge will require only two full days to be barged to the cut and craned into place, time is required to first remove the old bridge, and to commission the new one.
The old swing bridge has been functioning as a walkway, allowing pedestrians to cross the stretch of water connecting the two precincts. When necessary, the bridge can be swung away to allow ships free passage into the sea.
The bridge was built in 1997, when there was less pedestrian traffic. With new developments at the Silo District, a larger bridge was required to cater for the increased footfall.
On average, between 180 000 and 240 000 people cross the bridge every month, depending on the season and events taking place on the property.
The new bridge, which rotates on one bearing similar to a crane tower, is mechanically advanced and will increase capacity during peak periods. Advanced technology will also ensure the bridge needs less downtime for mechanical maintenance.
While the bridge is under final construction, a ferry service will run between the Pierhead Deck and the Clock Tower building from 07:30 to 18:30 while a MyCiTi bus shuttle service will operate between the Bascule Bridge, near the Cape Grace Hotel, and Silo Square from 18:30 to 23:30.
In addition, the V&A Waterfront will ensure visitors also have the option of using Mellowcabs – an electric bicycle – which can be found at Noble Square and Silo Square or a bicycle, also found at the same locations. All the services are free of charge.