Captain Cook Bridge, Brisbane

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Captain Cook Bridge
Captain Cook Bridge at dusk, Brisbane.jpg
Captain Cook Bridge, Brisbane
Coordinates 27°28′50″S 153°01′45″E / 27.480562°S 153.029101°E / -27.480562; 153.029101Coordinates: 27°28′50″S 153°01′45″E / 27.480562°S 153.029101°E / -27.480562; 153.029101
Carries eight lanes of Pacific Motorway
Motor vehicles
Crosses Brisbane River
Locale Brisbane, Queensland, Australia
Official name Captain Cook Bridge
Preceded by Goodwill Bridge
Followed by Story Bridge
Material Concrete box girder
Total length 555 metres (1,821 ft)
Longest span 183 metres (600 ft)
Clearance below 12.7 metres (42 ft)
Designer Albert Contessa
(Chief Engineer)
Contracted lead designer Co-Ordinator Generals Department
Constructed by Transfield Constructions
Construction start 1968
Construction end 1972
Construction cost $24 million[1]
Opened 1972
Daily traffic ~150,000 (as of 2007)

The Captain Cook Bridge is a motorway bridge over the Brisbane River in Brisbane, in the state of Queensland, Australia. It was built exclusively for vehicular traffic and was opened in 1972. The bridge crosses at the South Brisbane Reach of the river, linking Gardens Point in the Brisbane central business district on the north side to Kangaroo Point and South Brisbane on the southside.

Location and features[edit]

The Captain Cook Bridge, as viewed from Kangaroo Point Cliffs.

Captain Cook Bridge is constructed as a multi–span, precast prestressed concrete free-cantilever bridge with drop-in mid-spans. Comprising a dual carriageway that creates two separate bridges, one for each direction of traffic, heading north-south over the Brisbane River. Each bridge carries four lanes of traffic in one direction and links the M3 Pacific Motorway to the M3 Riverside Expressway. It is the main route from the city's south into the Brisbane central business district.[4]

At the time of completion, the main span of 183 metres (600 ft) held the world record for this type of structure for a period of three months, when it was superseded by the Harada Bridge in Japan with a span of 241 metres (791 ft).[2]

The structure is Queensland's busiest traffic bridge with more than one million vehicles crossing it weekly in 2007.[3]

Downstream from the Captain Cook Bridge is the Story Bridge, while the Goodwill Bridge is the next crossing upstream.

Concerns were raised in 2007 about the structure's integrity after it was revealed that contractors who attached a gantry to the bridge had drilled numerous holes which had damaged steel reinforcement bars. After investigations were completed it was concluded that the damage was insignificant as only 57 vertical steel bars out of 21,000 had been cut.[5]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Engineering Heritage Inner Brisbane (PDF), Engineers Australia, 2011, archived from the original (PDF) on 9 August 2014, retrieved 9 August 2014 
  2. ^ a b "Captain Cook Bridge". Structurae. Retrieved 15 December 2009. 
  3. ^ a b Thompson, Tuck (17 August 2007). "Captain Cook Bridge riddled with holes". The Courier-Mail. Retrieved 29 June 2008. 
  4. ^ "Captain Cook Bridge to face inspection". Brisbane Times. 17 August 2007. Retrieved 9 September 2011. 
  5. ^ "Riverside Expressway bridge 'structurally safe'". Brisbane Times. 4 August 2008. Retrieved 15 December 2009. 

External links[edit]

Media related to Captain Cook Bridge, Brisbane at Wikimedia Commons