Case Studies

Universal Cranes news and events from around Australia.

Pound Street Rail Bridge

Working within a tight shutdown timeframe, Universal Cranes installed the Grafton Rail Bridge Replacement on Pound Street, Grafton, NSW.

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Fulton Hogan on behalf of Roads and Maritime Services, NSW

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Grafton Rail Bridge Replacement, Pound Street, Grafton, NSW

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Manitowoc M18000 750t crawler crane (cross-hired)
Manitowoc M12000 110t crawler crane
Enerpac Load Balancing System


Installation of the new Pound Street Rail Bridge, Precast Sill Beam, Approach slab, Transition slab, and Remove Temporary Props


The Universal Cranes team worked hard to complete the installation of the new Pound Street rail bridge in Grafton, NSW over the Queen’s Birthday long weekend in June 2019. This was part of the wider project lead by Fulton Hogan to demolish the current rail bridge and replace it with a 42m steel truss bridge in a tight shutdown timeframe of just 72 hours. Universal Cranes provided detailed lift engineering, on-site lift coordination and supervision, and heavy lift cranage for the project.

Months of prior planning and preparatory work combined with efficient on-site delivery ensured the installation was completed following the existing bridge demolition – all within the 72-hour shutdown period.

The team maximised opportunities for pre-works prior to the shutdown window. The steel trusses arrived on site in late March, several months prior to the shutdown. The rail bridge was then assembled prior to the closure, to minimise the works required during the shutdown.

The site layout was carefully planned to accommodate the demolition works and position the trusses most efficiently while still enabling appropriate access for the demolition machinery.  The crane and assembled rail bridge were positioned to maintain a 10m exclusion zone around the bridge location, ensuring the excavators would have unobstructed access for the demolition phase.

Preparatory works also included the construction of the crane pad to accommodate the cross-hired 750t Manitowoc M18000 which lifted the new bridge into place. The M18000 was delivered by 50+ semi-trailers and assembled over 5 days.

Demolition commenced immediately following commencement of the shutdown. Once demolition was completed and the area cleared, the installation process for the new bridge immediately began. The 325t pre-rigged bridge was lifted from its temporary stands and tracked into the lift position by the Manitowoc M18000 crawler crane. Once the new bridge was secured and the rigging detached, the M18000 was tracked out of the construction zone.

Universal Cranes’ 110t Manitowoc M12000 crawler crane was then utilised to install the relieving slab, approach slab, and transition slab as part of the finishing works.

The $240m NSW Government project brings benefits to the City of Grafton through relieved congestion, improved road safety, and increased commercial activity and tourism with improved access to the CBD from the Pacific Highway. The new 525m long bridge is being constructed 70m downstream from the existing road and rail bridge over the Clarence River.

Key Equipment Utilised:

  • Manitowoc M18000 750t crawler crane (cross-hired)
  • Manitowoc M12000 110t crawler crane
  • Enerpac Load Balancing System

Check out the MANITOWOC M12000’s capabilities here, or give us a call to learn more about how Universal Cranes can help with your project.