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Jan De Nul: Bridge girders placed over E40 in Erpe-Mere

Posted on December 13, 2023

On behalf of the ‘Agentschap voor Wegen en Verkeer’, we are currently renovating two bridges in Erpe-Mere. Both bridges were on a list of Flemish bridges, tunnels and retaining walls with moderate to very serious defects and in need of priority repair. With our renewal works, we guarantee the safety of train and road users on one of Flanders’ busiest rail links and motorways. On the night of Saturday 9 to Sunday 10 December, we placed the girders of the bridge in Merestraat over the E40 in Erpe-Mere, an important milestone in the project.

The girders are concrete mastodons 44 metres long and weighing 110 tonnes. To install them in complete safety, the E40 was closed in both directions between the Erpe-Mere and Aalst entries and exits from Saturday 10pm to Sunday 10am.

Placing the bridge girders over E40

The project in Erpe-Mere involves renewing the bridge over the railway line between Ostend and Eupen and the bridge in Merestraat over the E40. We demolished the latter at the end of last year. Since then, we have been rebuilding the new bridge, which will be wider, have a longer lifespan and require limited maintenance.

In recent months, you could already see the abutments of the new bridge along the E40 rising. These are spaced further apart, allowing the E40 to be made wider. In this new phase, we placed the span between both abutments. It involved 6 girders that were lifted into place with two cranes.

Looking ahead

During the week of 11 December there will be works on the Merestraat bridge for 3 to 4 weeknights, for which one lane towards Ghent will be occupied between 8 pm and 5 am.

A final complete closure of the E40 is planned for the night of Saturday 13 January to Sunday 14 January 2024 to install the formwork for the bridge edges.


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