On 25 November NZTA permanently closed the old Māngere Bridge, due to concerns about the risk to public safety. The gates on the bridge have been permanently locked and four security guards are patrolling the bridge 24/7 and CCTV is being installed.
The old Māngere Bridge, which is more than 100 years old, is a much-loved and very popular meeting and fishing place that has linked the Onehunga and Māngere Bridge communities for more than a century.
The good news is that resource consent for a new bridge has been granted and the contract for its construction will be complete early next year, with construction also planned to start next year. It is expected to take about two-and-a-half years to build the replacement bridge, which will include walking, cycling and fishing facilities.
The new bridge will be at least 8m wide, and up to 12m in some bays to enable fishing. It will curve towards the motorway bridge, be high enough for small boats to pass underneath and have a wider span to allow some form of opening for larger boats in the future.
The new bridge will be constructed next to the old bridge using the same abutments, but further away from the port.
The old Māngere Bridge will be demolished during construction of the new structure, as leaving it in the harbour poses a risk to people passing underneath it.