Tuesday 11 Nov 2003

£1.3 MILLION TO BE SPENT ON MAJOR BRIDGE WORK IN LANCASHIRE

Region & Route:
Network Rail and Lancashire council are to spend over £1.3 million on strengthening and rebuilding two bridges in the county at the beginning of 2004.  The work is being carried out so that both bridges are able to carry 40 tonne commercial road vehicles and comply with European Union regulations.  Network Rail is paying for 95% of the work, with the local authority contributing the remainder. The larger project of the two will involve the demolition of Church Road bridge, Plumpton.   The structure is life expired, so Network Rail and the council are spending £800,000 on a full reconstruction.  A temporary pedestrian footbridge will be installed before the work begins in December.  The road will be closed for 10 weeks whilst the bridge is being replaced and a signed diversion route will be in place during the road closure. The new bridge will be of a low maintenance design and will have a 120 year life span, which means that the structure will carry the highway without the need for further disruption to road users for the foreseeable future. - more - Bridges – 2 In the other project £500,000 will be spent on Station Road bridge, Salwick replacing weak and corroded elements of structural steel.  A concrete overslab will also be constructed to reinforce the structure and permit the installation of a modern waterproofing system.  To allow the work to go ahead a full road closure will be implemented as a safety precaution, and a signed traffic diversion route will be put in place before the road is closed.              Network Rail regional director Tim Clarke said:  “As part of Network Rail’s continued effort to rebuild the railway we are working in partnership with Lancashire county council to strengthen and replace the bridges.  This will make the roads and the railway as safe and reliable as possible for the future.” There are over 1000 Network Rail owned road bridges in the North West and a national assessment has been taking place to determine which of them need improvement.  This bridgework has been requested by central Government as part of a national programme, “Bridgeguard 3”.  This type of work is both unavoidable and vital to the safety of road and rail users. 

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