Drivers must now be patient in Taxenbach (Unterpinzgau). The state of Salzburg is renovating the Schönraingraben bridge on the B311. The Pinzgauer Straße will only be passable in one lane by the summer. The building was last renovated almost 30 years ago.
The concrete is crumbling on the underside. Mainly because of the road salt in winter, rust eats through important parts of the reinforced concrete bridge. The main work takes place under it, says Werner David from the Bridge Construction Office of the State of Salzburg: “We asked the drivers to understand. The bridge is not yet a problem child, but needs renovation. We can’t postpone it anymore.”
Entire slope cannot be stabilized
The rusty roller bearings also need to be replaced. They compensate for vibrations caused by traffic and landslides. The masses of earth under the bridge are moving. Last year, 25 to 30 meter long anchors were drilled into the slope to secure the pillars, the expert says: “We cannot stabilize the entire slope with them. That is not possible, but we can very well secure our piers and abutments. There is no direct rock there, that is our problem.”
Also transitions damaged by salt
On the bridge, the connecting pieces to the road must also be renewed. The last time sanitation was done here was 28 years ago – standard monitoring. The state of Salzburg spends one million euros. But it could get more expensive. Since 2020, the construction material for bridges alone has cost around 50 percent more, says senior technician David: “We were warned about this and also put the project out to tender with variable prices. We are currently still within the budgetary framework.”
Traffic light regulation until summer
About 12,000 vehicles drive over the Schönraingraben Bridge every day. Because of the work, traffic can now only be guided in one lane: “It won’t work without traffic lights. And if the traffic jam gets too long, we try to resolve the traffic jam with a personal arrangement.”
At the beginning of the summer holidays on July 8th, the important inner-Austrian traffic connection through the Unterpinzgau should be fully passable again.