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Lendlease Engineering won the tender for the $985 million Northern Connector with its concrete pavement design.
Lendlease Engineering won the tender for the $985 million Northern Connector with its concrete pavement design.

Concrete road design to cut fuel consumption, maintenance

Plans to build South Australia’s first major concrete road have been welcomed by an industry body.

Cement Concrete & Aggregates Australia (CCAA) has issued a statement praising the South Australian Government’s decision to construct Adelaide’s Northern Connector out of concrete, as it would deliver a “raft of benefits” for drivers and taxpayers.

The benefits identified included better ride quality and fuel economy for heavy vehicles to reduced maintenance costs and network disruption.

Lendlease Engineering won the tender for the $985 million Northern Connector – a six-lane, 15.5km link between the Northern Expressway, the South Road Superway and the Port River Expressway.

The company’s bid involved a concrete pavement incorporating a diamond groove finish to reduce noise and extend the surface life of the road.

According to CCAA, the successful design appealed to the state government thanks to an increased local materials content, the creation of extra jobs, and a lower cost over the life of the road.

“The South Australian Government deserves congratulations for recognising the benefits of concrete pavements and calling for concrete alternatives to be included in the tender process,” CCAA chief executive Ken Slattery said.

“By doing so, they provided the environment for private sector innovation that inspired Lendlease Engineering’s compelling tender and design.”

Slattery added that the inherent durability and strength of the Northern Connector’s concrete pavement would result in a “significant” reduction in maintenance.

“Not only is that good news for taxpayers but it means drivers will also face less delays from network disruptions,” he said.

“Drivers will also notice an improvement in ride quality. And because the concrete pavement has less rolling resistance, heavy vehicle owners in particular will benefit from better fuel consumption.”

The CCAA statement claimed concrete roads are the strongest and most durable road surface and perform better under heavy traffic.

Slattery added the “substantial” lengths of the upgraded Hume and Pacific highways in NSW had proven the benefits of concrete.

“We think this will be the first of many new concrete roads – not just in South Australia but other states and territories - as the economic, environmental and social benefits are realised," he concluded.

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Monday, 26 August, 2019 3:39pm
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