HomeBiggest projectsNowra Bridge in New South Wales, Australia

Nowra Bridge in New South Wales, Australia

The Nowra Bridge which supports the Princes Highway across the Shoalhaven River, at Nowra in Australia, connecting the main side of Nowra to Bomaderry and North Nowra, was opened in Feb 2013, after 8 years of construction.

The scope of the A$342m ($261.85m) project funded jointly by the NSW and federal governments, included the building of a modern bridge across the Shoalhaven River with four lanes bridge. The new concrete bridge with a four-lane is being constructed to the west of the two present bridges.

Nowra Bridge project scope
Ongoing works at the bridge
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The project also incorporated the modernization of a 1.6km highway stretch to three northbound and southbound lanes between Moss Street and Bolong Road. Two right turn lanes were created into Illaroo Road from Princes Highway. Furthermore, one dedicated left-turn slip lane and three right-turn lanes were created from Illaroo Road to the highway.

The upgrade of the intersection between Princes Highway and Bridge Road included the creation of two southbound right-turn lanes into Bridge Road and one left turn between Bridge Road and the highway.

The access between Pleasant Way and Princes Highway has been closed and a new local road connecting Lyrebird Drive and Princes Highway built to redistribute traffic on local roads. The northbound bridge has been upgraded to accommodate three lanes for southbound traffic.

The scheme will allow the movement of motor vehicles with a height of over 4.6m or higher mass limit B-double machines. The project was designed and is being constructed by Fulton Hogan Construction. Transport for NSW awarded a Spatial Media tender to offer a visual communications strategy and community engagement for the scheme.

Salt Media was tasked with animation and visualization for the Bridge. The scope of the task incorporated texturing from preliminary designs, modeling, and compositing into aerial photography, 3D architectural visualization camera, and lens matching.

Reported earlier

August 2019

Infrastructure Australia accepted the new four-lane bridge construction immediately to the west (upriver) of the old bridges.


The project’s early works started in February with the major works starting in the second half of the year.

June 2021

The first segment was launched for the new Bridge. Crews had already installed 23 casings for the piles and were at the time installing up to 60 meters long piles in the river. The bridge will have 19 bridge deck segments in total, which when complete, will have a length of 360 meters and become a great travel boost in and around Nowra.

December 2021

The new four-lane Nowra Bridge was past the halfway milestone. 11 of the 19 bridge deck segments were already constructed across the Shoalhaven River. The bridge will have reached the northern foreshore of the river in early 2022 if the weather permits.

After it crosses the whole river, months of working will still be needed before motorists can drive through it. The works include installing barriers, adjusting the temporary bearing plates under the bridge, paving the decks, building a road embankment, and installing signs and line markings.

May 2022

Nowra bridge in New South Wales to cross Shoalhaven River by mid-2022

The US$ 342M new Nowra bridge project is still progressing across the Shoalhaven River. The new 360-meter-long, four-lane structure, which will eventually become the northbound bridge, is visible from the northern shore and is expected to reach the northern side of the river in mid-2022.

Fulton Hogan has finished all nine bridge piers, and 17 of the 19 bridge deck segments have been cast and launched across the Shoalhaven River while segment 18 is set to be poured soon. The steel truss structure, which is linked to the front of the bridge and used to reduce weight as the bridge is pushed out and has now stretched past the final northern pier.

According to Transport for NSW, the final bridge deck segment that will allow the new Nowra bridge to be pushed into its final resting position will be more difficult to build and launch than the previous segments.

Reportedly, work as part of the final launch involves removing the launch nose; joining the deck to the piers by bolting together the permanent bridge bearings; completing the building of the bridge abutment walls; building the bridge safety barriers along each edge of the traffic lanes and pedestrian railings along the new 3.5 meters wide shared path, and laying the asphalt road surface.

The temporary casting yard area and steel molds used for bridge construction on the river’s southern bank will also be eliminated, and the 22,000 tonnes of rocks in the rock platform that allowed access over the water on the western side removed. After that, earth fill and pavement layers will be installed to allow access up to the bridge.

New Bomaderry Creek bridge crossing project

Work on the new Bomaderry Creek bridge crossing, which is also part of the project, is also making progress. The new Bomaderry Creek bridge’s 39 bridge planks have all been installed, and some of the decks have been poured.

The next section of the concrete deck slab will be laid soon on the northbound side of the highway, where the old footpath was removed, resulting in some altered traffic conditions in the area.  Work has advanced around the main bridge structure as the new bridge edges closer to the northern rockface. Lower structural pavement layers have been laid at the intersection of the Princes Highway and the new road Shearwater Way, which will link up Lyrebird Drive to the Princes Highway.

The northbound lanes between the northern bridge abutment and Illaroo Road have also been upgraded. Following that, workers will begin laying asphalt layers to complete these sections, with Shearwater Way expected to open to traffic in June, weather permitting. Throughout May, night work will be done on the site.

To prepare for upcoming traffic changes on the new Nowra bridge, Bolong Road will have partial lane closures of the right turn lanes from the Princes Highway at the intersection over one weekend in late May, weather permitting. This intersection will have left turn-in and left turn-out access during the construction.

The new bridge will replace the existing wrought iron Whipple truss (southbound) bridge, which was built in 1881 and is nearing the end of its life.

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