Hi-spec culverts for saltwater environment

The Eastern Creek Upgrade in the town of Lakes Entrance is the largest drainage project that the East Gippsland Shire has undertaken to date and is intended to improve the capacity of Eastern Creek, which runs through industrial areas of Lakes Entrance, and to assist in eliminating flooding in the coastal town, which lies just two metres above sea level.

The upgrade is also one of the largest reinforced concrete box culvert projects Rocla has supplied in the Southern region, and includes five major road crossings where Rocla® reinforced concrete box culverts designed for acid sulphate soils in a salt-water environment have been supplied. The higher spec product means a lifespan of  100 years is still expected regardless of the corrosive circumstances.

Rocla representative Robert Burns said that in addition to these special requirements, traffic management was essential to maintain access to the industrial estate. “Coordination of deliveries was critical as the base slabs had to be poured and culverts installed as quickly as possible,” he said.

“Rocla manufactured and kept the culverts stored until they were required, progressively delivering them to site when we needed them,” said Gordon Charles, Senior Project Manager for East Gippsland Shire Council. “That was exceptional in my view. It meant we managed to keep road closures to a minimum which was appreciated by Council and the local residents.”

Gordon says Rocla’s willingness to accommodate the demands of the project was also evident when a discussion with homeowners about installing drainage through their properties revealed a preference for a flat surface over the top rather than an open drain above circular pipes, after the pipes had been manufactured. “Rocla allowed us to modify the order to box culverts. We were very impressed with their flexibility and sympathetic approach to our circumstances,” said Gordon.

Lakes Entrance is situated 320km east of Melbourne on the coastline of 90 Mile Beach and is one of the largest tourist areas in Victoria with access to the state’s largest inland waterways.