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Crews have started driving concrete piles for the $230 million Townsville Ring Road Stage 5 (TRR5) project.

Cast by Rockhampton business Stresscrete, the piles weigh up to 18.2 tonnes and are up to 28m long.

A Georgiou AECOM consortium is leading construction of the TRR5 project, which will duplicate the only remaining two-lane section of the Townsville Ring Rd between Vickers Bridge and Shaw Rd, with an interchange to be built at Beck Drive.

The project will use 192 piles in total for overpasses at Beck Drive and Hervey Range Rd, and for bridges over the Bohle and Little Bohle rivers.

A Transport and Main Roads spokesman said the piles were being delivered to the site on a semi-trailer truck one at a time, with about four deliveries per day.

“The first pile was driven last Friday (September 24),” he said.

“Geotechnical survey identified that some piles will require a pre-drill, so crews will use a 600mm diameter drill to auger down four to six metres.

“From there, crews will place the piles into the hole, then drive the piles further into the ground using a piling rig, essentially a very large hammer.

“Crews will do this using a new, MPx90 multipurpose rig, weighing 125 tonnes.”

He said the work crews aimed to complete six piles per day, with each pile taking about 1.5 to two hours.

“The first location for the piling works is the Little Bohle River bridge, with works ongoing until mid next month (October), weather permitting,” the spokesman said.

“Crews will move to the Hervey Range Rd overpass, then the Beck Drive overpass, then finally the Bohle River, with all piling works expected to be completed by January.”

The TRR5 project is jointly funded by the Australian and Queensland governments on an 80:20 basis under the 15-year, $13 billion Bruce Highway Upgrade Program.

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