Niche Industries – Bridge Maintenance
Niche Industries is predominantly a service provider to Road Authorities, Local Government, and private construction entities in the areas of maintenance, repair, improvement and replacement of bridges and structures.
Niche Industries was established in 1997 by founder and current director, Michael du Vallon. The focus was to fill a niche in the industry by providing a quality service via honest and ethical business practice to benefit both the client and the company’s employees.
In the infancy of the business the main expertise lay in the area of bridge deck expansion joints and structural bridge bearings. Over the ensuing years a vast diversification of services has been developed to meet our clients needs and forged a place for Niche Industries at the top end of many of our client’s preferred contractor lists. Our company policies place a high value on earning the respect of our clients and the right to maintain repeat business with them.
Bridge Deck Expansion Joints
Installation, repair, removal and replacement of bridge deck expansion joints is a core service of our business.
The experience within Niche Industries in relation to works associated with a wide variety of bridge deck expansion joint systems is possibly second to none within Victoria.
Over many years the company has been involved in undertaking expansion joint installation and replacement works on hundreds of structures within the Victorian road network and over neighbouring state boarders.
As an independent company we retain access to products from various joint suppliers and manufacturers, which, combined with a thorough understanding of the features and limitations of these products can determine the best solution for any given structure.
With company personnel having a background in the design and manufacture of structural bearings Niche Industries can boast an extensive understanding of the function of these components within a structure.
By understanding how these elements work and what their purpose is enables us to determine if maintenance, refurbishment or replacement may be required and how to go about facilitating the works in an efficient manner.
Whether it be a bearing pedestal reconstruction, resetting, refurbishment or total removal and replacement of the bearing or any of its components Niche Industries has access to bearing suppliers and experience with the hydraulic jacking equipment required to facilitate the works.
Design & Construct Projects
Experience in small scale design and construct projects with local government is included in Niche Industries repertoire.
Whilst initial design and concept can be facilitated in-house, our alliance with experienced bridge design engineers enable finalisation of design and proof engineering on the project. Facilitation of the works including any subcontract fabrication of components is managed in-house resulting in relatively cost effective and practical solutions.
Bridge Railing and Accident Damage Repair
Under the banner of our bridge maintenance activities is included bridge railing upgrades and repair of accident damaged bridge components.
Bridge Railing and End Posts are common elements damaged by vehicle impact and require prompt and efficient repair to make the structure safe. Niche Industries has the capacity to undertake repairs to accident damage of these components replacing like with like or upgrading the components in accordance with current specification.
Bridge Railing upgrades ranging from total removal and replacement through to basic strengthening are activities common to Niche Industries. Included in these activities are bridge approach guard fence installation and repair.
There are a variety of activities associated with the general maintenance of structures that Niche Industries undertakes on behalf of its clients.
The activities include, but are not necessarily limited to:
- Masonry repair
- Epoxy crack injection
- Application of protective coating
- Scupper extensions
- High pressure water cleaning of various structure elements
- Construction of retaining walls
- Scour protection works
- Regulation of bridge approach pavement
- Anti-skid treatment
- Carbon Fibre Strengthening
Niche Industries has worked closely with the VicRoads Bridge Design team over the years in undertaking site surveys and investigation of structures for the purposes of mass limit analysis and proving location of structural reinforcement.
Whilst gathering critical data for VicRoads the undertaking of these investigative works has given Niche Industries an invaluable insight into the specific elements associated with a range of differing structures and construction techniques of bridges and culverts. Obtaining this information enabled further enhancement of our understanding of processes that can be adopted to maintain, repair or upgrade failing or defective structure elements.
Beaching & Batter Protection
Placement and repair of grouted rock beaching, dry rock beaching, armour stone and construction of rock gabion baskets and reno matresses for stabalisation and protection of batters are all activities Niche Industries has had considerable experience in.
Niche industries maintains in-house traffic management expertise in relation to planning and implementation of traffic guidance systems.
Provision of in-house traffic control enables the client to deal with just the one entity when engaging the company to undertake maintenance or construction activities.
Experience has shown that providing this service for our clients significantly simplifies the process of facilitating the works whilst enhancing the efficiency. Independent Road Safety Audits are regularly undertaken on our VicRoads contracts in accordance with maintaining our TMP & TGS prequalification status.
Niche Engineering Pty Ltd t/as Niche Industries operates with an integrated management system incorporating the elements of Quality Assurance, Occupational Health & Safety and Environmental Management.
The company holds prequalification status with VicRoads at a level of B1 and M2BW within the category of Bridge Construction & Maintenance, a financial level of F2 and TMP & TGS within the traffic control and guidance category.
Further to the National Prequalification the company holds a B1 prequalification with the Civil Contractors Federation.
We look forward to the development of new relationships with clients and suppliers alike as we continue to improve, build and diversify the range of services we can offer. Whether it be as simple as routine structure maintenance and level 1 inspection through to complex carbon fibre strengthening of structure elements we are confident we can tailor our services to meet the needs of each individual client.Michael du Vallon B.E.
Michael du Vallon B.E.
Following graduation from an engineering degree at Monash University in 1991 Michael was heavily involved in design and manufacture of structural bearings and bridge deck expansion joint systems prior to founding Niche Industries in 1997.
Belinda du Vallon
Co-Director & Office Administrator
With a background in business management and astute people skills Belinda became a key component of the Niche team in 1998.
Joining Niche Industries full time in 1999 Brett has gained invaluable experience in a multitude of bridge maintenance activities and now fills the role of General Manager.
Dave Mikelsons & Sam Collins
Dave joined the team in 2001 and Sam was introduced in 2002. With a combined wealth of experience in bridge maintenance activities, they head up our on site contingent.