All eight lanes on Auckland Harbour Bridge should be open by the end of this coming week.
A new strut was successfully installed on the bridge overnight last night to replace the one damaged two weeks ago - and the southbound clip-on lanes have reopened on Sunday.
Waka Kotahi transport services general manager Brett Gliddon says if all goes to plan, all eight lanes of Auckland's Harbour Bridge should be open by late this week.
"It will be a matter of getting the measurements right and making sure the bridge doesn't play up."
Gliddon said he couldn't give an exact day at this stage and it would be a case of monitoring and assessing if there were any areas of additional stress that needed further work.
"The new strut is now in place, which is great progress and a significant step forward in getting the bridge fully repaired and operational again," Gliddon said.
A team of engineers still had further work to do to tension the new strut, he said.
"This key component in this process involves re-distributing the load-bearing capacity of the strut so the bridge's weight distribution is returned to its pre-incident balance.
"This will include constant monitoring to assess how the entire bridge is performing now the new strut is in place."
The southbound clip-on lanes that were closed overnight to safely allow the work to be carried have now reopened.
Once the overnight work has been completed, three lanes will be open in each direction.
However, the bridge is still not at full capacity. Two lanes on the centre span remain closed.
"That means people should continue to use public transport where they can, use the Western Ring Route instead of the Bridge and allow plenty of time for their journeys," Gliddon said.
"The Auckland Harbour Bridge is a key strategic asset and it's critical we maintain its long-term structural integrity by ensuring there is no lasting damage or new strain put on it.
"We understand how disruptive and inconvenient it is for customers with the bridge operating at 75 per cent capacity and we want to re-open all eight lanes as soon as possible."
The installation of the new strut and rebalancing of the bridge's loadbearing capacity was a "complex" operation, he said.
"Our bridge engineers, contractors and operations teams have worked extraordinarily hard over the past two weeks to come up with a solution, while also innovating and responding in real time to keep traffic moving safely around the city."
Gliddon said the freak event, in which a 127km/h wind gust blew a truck over and damaged the strut, was unprecedented in the bridge's 61-year history.
"Waka Kotahi thanks our customers for their patience and understanding while we work as quickly and safely possible to make a permanent repair to the bridge that will open all eight lanes."
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