Sorell Causeway

The Sorell Causeway is a causeway in Tasmania that stretches from the western side of Midway Point across Orielton Lagoon to Sorell. Together with Mcgees Bridge (that connects the eastern side of Midway Point) they connect Sorell with Hobart via the Tasman Highway.

Sorell Causeway
The western approach
Coordinates42°47′53″S 147°32′40″E
Carries Tasman Highway
CrossesOrielton Lagoon
LocaleHobart, Tasmania
Maintained byDepartment of Infrastructure, Energy and Resources

In colonial times, the Richmond Bridge had been the primary crossing point of the Coal River on the road from Hobart to Sorell and beyond to the Tasman Peninsula and Port Arthur.

It had been decided much earlier that if a crossing at Pitt Water could be made, it would considerably reduce the time to reach Sorell.[1] The engineering was difficult, but with a ready supply of convict labour on hand, the causeway was constructed with main force. It was finally completed in 1872.[2]

The Sorell Causeway is the second such convict-built causeway in the South-East of Tasmania, and is similar to the causeway section of the Bridgewater Bridge across the River Derwent.

In recent years it has undergone massive repairs and modifications. It has been decided that there needed to be a better flow of tidal water from Pitt Water and Orielton Lagoon into the open sea as the stagnation was causing outbreaks of Blue-Green Algae which was poisoning the other marine species there. As a result, sluice conduits were cut into the lagoon, and a new pile system was created, to turn longer sections of the causeway into actual bridges.

Ever since its construction it has been a major route of access from Hobart to the east coast and the Tasman Peninsula, and is now a section of the Tasman Highway.


  1. "Morrison, Askin (1800 - 1876)". Australian Dictionary of Biography. 2006. Retrieved 5 March 2008.
  2. "History". Sorell Barracks. 2008. Archived from the original on 16 June 2005. Retrieved 5 March 2008.
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