Monday, January 13, 2014

Abbotsford Rd Bridge, Albion Fiveways

We have seen evidence of Brisbane engineer Walter Taylor earlier in this blog. The bridge across the river at Indooroopilly that now bears name is his most-remembered work, but he was also involved in the construction of churches, shops, apartment blocks and houses.

There is an earlier bridge too - not on as grand a scale as the Indooroopilly Toll Bridge, but nonetheless on a high density traffic route. It is the bridge across Breakfast Creek to connect Sandgate Rd with Abbotsford Rd, designed and built by Taylor for the Brisbane City Council. It opened in 1928, some eight years prior to his Indooroopilly bridge. Here is a photograph that shows the bridge under construction.
(Photo: Brisbane City Council; BCC-B120-30494)

The bridge was at that time the largest bridge erected by the Council and was given an official opening by the mayor, Alderman William Jolly. There must have been teething problems, however - I found a letter written by Taylor to the editor of the Brisbane Courier in January 1928 in response to apparent criticism of considerable delays in the bridge's construction. Taylor indicates that wet weather, together with a requirement by the Harbours and Marine Department to move the site of the bridge after the contract had commenced, led to unavoidable delays. The letter concluded by saying "It is necessary for me to make these facts public to protect my reputation. I can do a job just as quickly and efficiently as the next man, provided I am allowed to run it..."

In any case the bridge was eventually completed and here is a photograph of the finished item taken in 1928.
(Photo: Brisbane City Council; BCC-B120-13197)

The bridge is still providing sterling service to Brisbane commuters who use Sandgate Rd to get to the CBD, and in peak hours it can be very busy. Here is a recent photograph.
(Photo: © 2014 the foto fanatic)


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tff



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