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Keeping the West Gate Bridge strong works complete

The state government says the West Gate Bridge works will allow freight users to consistently use the bridge for decades to come

The Victorian government says once-in-a-generation repainting works have been completed on Victoria’s most iconic bridge to keep it strong and stable for decades to come.

The West Gate Bridge has been stripped back and the entire steel structure below deck level has been refreshed for the first time in 40 years thanks to a $70 million facelift to make it safer for the many trucks that use the bridge daily.

Hanging under the bridge on numerous suspended platforms – 58 metres above ground and water – a dedicated team of around 70 workers stripped back the existing surface to bare metal, before applying several coats of paint.

More than 55,000 litres of anti-corrosive paint were used across an 848-metre steel section of the bridge. A similar shade of grey was used for most of the bridge, with the bridge props painted white to give some contrast.

The paint job is an important part of maintaining the bridge and protecting the steel structure from corrosion.

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A further $27.7 million is being invested as part of ongoing maintenance of the bridge, which is a vital river crossing and gateway to Melbourne’s western suburbs.

This investment announced in the 2022-23 Victorian State Budget, is in addition to the regular maintenance that takes place all year round to ensure the bridge remains operational.

This funding package includes $8.23 million for additional works including bridge pier strengthening.

Since opening in 1978, traffic volumes on the West Gate Bridge have increased from 40,000 vehicles per day to around 205,000.

The ongoing works will assist to keep the bridge structurally sound and safe, reduce lane closures, and keep motorists, freight and tourism moving.

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