German contractor Hochtief A.G. on March 5 completed the sliding of a 985-meter-long road bridge 19.5 m sideways onto awaiting supports in 6.5 hours in a project to replace the Lennetal Bridge carrying the A45 highway close to Hagen in North Rhine-Westphalia.

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The contractor first erected the 30,000-tonne steel and concrete structure on temporary supports to one side of the alignment to carry the 90,000 daily vehicles that use the crossing. Then it demolished the old structure and built the first of two three-lane carriageways of the new bridge, as well as supports for the adjacent  second carriageway.

Having transferred traffic onto the first carriageway, the team pulled the second one into place with hydraulically-powered cables. The six-lane crossing is due to open this summer.

The successful operation “paves the way for future construction projects,” stated Elfriede Sauerwein-Braksiek, director of the Westphalia branch of the state’s highway owner Autobahn GmbH.