Kopu Bridge Milestones


Two milestones on the $47m two-lane new Kopu Bridge  - which is  on target for completion by this time next year.

  • From the temporary work platform extending from the eastern bank of the Waihou River, the last set of piles are being driven.
  • From the western work platform, the last span of beams are being laid on the western section of the bridge, and the final section of deck constructed.

Because this bridge is built on soft soils, the piles are up to 55m deep, and 6-8 piles are required to support each bridge pier. NZTA Project Services Manager Bryce Carter says that if all the piles were laid end to end, they would reach from Kopu to Thames.

Kopu bridge finished in a year | NZTA

Completing the last span on the western section will mean construction vehicles can be driven onto the bridge for the first time. The final section extends from the bridge abutment (where the bridge meets the approach road) to the first pier. The contractor will soon begin constructing the concrete barrier on the southern edge of the bridge, and a second barrier separating the traffic lanes from the combined cycle/walkway.

New bridge taking shape | NZTAMr Carter said soil settlement rates will determine when work can start on building the approach roads. Settlement rates to date are in line with what the project team expected. If this continues, the approach roads will be built in the next spring/summer construction season.

Landscaping and retaining wall construction at the new State Highway 25/26 roundabout will also be completed very soon.





  1. Carl says:

    whats the old bridge going to be used for?

  2. Matt L says:

    edit: did’t read Carl’s question correctly

  3. Jon C says:

    @Carl Not known yet. Because of its historic nature it wont be demolished. Talk of it being used for cyclists as mentioned on Sunday http://www.aktnz.co.nz/2011/05/15/thames-line-handed-to-cycleway/

  4. Carl says:

    @ Jon,

    thanks mate, thought it was something like that.

    I heard also (which was local talk when i was home in Dec)

    that it was going to be maintained correctly so that overflow for “local” traffic could use it to go north, I’e Thames and further up past that way.

    doesn’t sound stupid, but the bike trail thing is also good.

  5. max says:

    There would presumably have to be some maintenance, as a historic structure, and maybe to keep the swing bridge element in working condition. But I can’t see it have much use for cars otherwise. The bridge won’t be a bottleneck anymore, so there’s no need for extra capacity on this road anymore. The route also will be pretty much the same length whether driving new or old bridge, so again, no real benefit even if you are going to Thames.


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