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Harbour Bridge future questioned

Published: 8:46AM Sunday March 12, 2006 Source: RNZ

Concern is rising about the future of the Auckland Harbour bridge after cracks and signs of fatigue were found in its clip-on lanes.

Auckland City Council Transport Committee chair Richard Simpson is calling for Transit New Zealand to investigate the future of the clip-on lanes as part of its 10-year plan.

The four clip-ons were attached in 1969, doubling the number of lanes, but in recent years they have cracked and shown signs of fatigue.

Simpson says the lifespan of the lanes and the future of the bridge should be an urgent priority.

He says while repairs can be made, the bridge is fundamentally a cheap connection that only allows cars to cross.

Transit says its 10-year plan, now out for consultation, includes funding for bridge maintenance, and a study into a second harbour crossing.