ENGINEERS: CMG Consulting Engineers & Trinity Engineering
STEEL FABRICATOR: Alchemy All Metal Fabricators
BUILDER: Tom Redding
The Cobbold Gorge project represented a unique opportunity to assist with the design and construction of glass bridge to be nestled between 2 pieces of ancient rock formation gorge in a remote outback location, six hours drive west from Cairns.
The owners of the Cobbold Gorge have won numerous Awards for their Eco Tourism business where visitors can experience Queensland’s youngest gorge and wanted to continue to add to the visitor experience by offering a walk over the gorge via a glass bridge.
Given the natural formation of the gorge formation, the design and installation of this product required significant planning between the project Engineer, Fabricator, Builder and Director John Hyde to ensure the successful completion.
A glass bridge between a gorge has never been undertaken in Australia before so there were a number of design and manufacture assumptions that would need to be resolved during installation.
Due to the remote location of the gorge and the minimal access available for standard commercial applications, the glass bridge needed to be built using (2) helicopters to lift all the steel/glass and structural components into place.
Placement of the beams onto the concrete footings using the helicopter was challenging due to the different levels of rotor wash deflecting back up of the gorge floor and this needed to be managed onsite during installation.
Installation was made more easy due to the planning and pre assembly that was completed prior to the materials being transported to site. The fabrication of an A frame style gantry system so to be able to fit a block and tackle that was manoeuvrable the full length of the bridge so it could be used to install the 120kg cross member beams and 360kg glass floor panels.