Department of State GrowthTransport

Tasman Bridge Re-Opening - 40 Years Later

On 8 October 1977 the newly refurbished Tasman Bridge re-opened.

Tasman Bridge

Photo by State Growth/Sandessa Foster

The Tasman Bridge carries the highest traffic volumes in Tasmania. Each day an average of 65,000 vehicles travel over the bridge.

The Department of State Growth regularly inspects and maintains this key link across the Derwent River. The bridge is in good condition and with continued maintenance both above and below the waterline it is expected to have a remaining life of at least 40-50 years.

At the time the bridge was repaired, it was also modified to accommodate five lanes for traffic instead of the original four lanes. This allowed for the introduction of the peak ‘tidal flow’ system of three traffic lanes for the direction of main traffic flow, which is still in place today.

The bridge’s central span continues to be used for shipping in line with the original design. Large vessels are directed by the harbor pilot and towed by tug boats as they travel below the bridge and all road traffic is halted when large vessels pass under the bridge.

In 1975 the Bridgewater Bridge was the nearest alternative point for road traffic to cross the Derwent River. In March 1975 the Joint Committee on Second Hobart Bridge was appointed to supervise a Commonwealth-funded project for a new crossing. The Bowen Bridge, which connects the Brooker Highway (at Goodwood Road) with East Derwent Highway, opened in 1984.

For more info on the Tasman Bridge, visit