Sunday, June 26, 2011

New Zealand's Bridges: Helmores Lane Bridge across the River Avon in Christchurch

March 2011 (-43.532 Degrees, 172.622 Degrees) Helmores Lane Bridge

The River Avon runs easterly through the town of Christchurch before emptying into the Pacific. We are starting our journey down the Avon in a vast green area in western Christchurch that includes parks and botanical gardens. 

This three span timber bridge carries vehicular traffic and with its rough hewn timber piers and diagonal supports it reminds me a little of the bridge they built for the film 'Bridge on the River Kwai.' 

I was surprised to find a reference to it in Structurae. It was apparently designed by Joseph Cornish Helmore in 1864 making it one of the earliest bridges still in use in New Zealand. There is even a book written about early New Zealand Bridges, 'Bridging the Gap,' by Thornton Geoffrey that includes a photo and a description of the bridge.   

Hopefully this bridge, which was badly damaged and closed to traffic after the recent earthquake, has been repaired.

Creative Commons License
New Zealand's Bridges: Helmores Lane Bridge across the River Avon in Christchurch by Mark Yashinsky is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported License.

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