An entirely repainted Te Rewa Rewa Bridge is about to be fully reopened in time for Labour Weekend.
The complex and technical maintenance has taken 55 weeks to complete, with scaffolding and a narrow pedestrian tunnel in place throughout that period.
“Seeing the mountain through the bridge’s arched ribs is a key part of the bridge’s story, as well as being the must-have photo for any visitor,” says NPDC Manager Infrastructure Projects Andrew Barron.
“The new paint has to hold up in a challenging environment with wind-blown sand, it also has better UV resistance and will stay glossy for longer – the bridge is looking like new.”
The bridge is closed one more time, from 9am to 3pm through to 20 October, to remove all the scaffolding, after which the bridge will be revealed in full for locals and visitors to enjoy.
A painting trial in January 2021 was followed by work on the rest of the 69-metre bridge from September of the same year. Multiple layers of old paint had to be removed from every surface, including the rails and beneath the deck, before the new paint could be applied.
With regular washing and touch-ups, the new paint job is expected to last 10-15 years. The project had a number of challenges to manage including the design of the bridge, the weight of scaffolding that the bridge could carry, the need to keep any materials out of the river, and maintaining as much public access as possible while the work took place.
The $1.8m project was 51 per cent funded by Waka Kotahi and the balance from NPDC.