The Churchill Way flyovers in Liverpool will be demolished after an independent inspection found they are too expensive to repair.
Liverpool City Council has decided to demolish the two structures after an inspection report by Amey engineers concluded that they should no longer carry vehicles or pedestrians.
Amey engineers concluded that the structure had deteriorated to a point where post tensioning tendons and ducts had corroded and signs of structural distress including cracking over some supports where visible.
The report says that it was unfeasible to strengthen the structures and that the cost of replacing them would be between £50M to £60M. On the other hand, demolishing the structures would only cost £5.7M.
Work to take down the flyovers is set to begin in the summer. In addition, Liverpool City Council is at present developing proposals to improve nearby infrastructure at an estimated cost of £10M to cope with the increased traffic flow caused by the demolition of the flyovers.
Amey principal project manager Trevor Cherryholme said: “Our primary areas of concern are the poor quality of original construction, subsequent deterioration and the current signs of structural distress.
“More specifically, poor steel placement and spalled concrete, collapsed or failed formwork, failed drainage and signs of overstress in the deck are among our most significant findings. It is our view that there is no safe option other than demolition.”
The two-lane, concrete structures were opened in 1970 as part of a city centre inner ring road scheme that was later cancelled. They were closed at the end of September 2018 for detailed inspections to be conducted by Amey, after design and construction flaws were discovered.
Since 2016 problems had been discovered with the structure’s drainage system, internal supports, barriers and bearings.
Amey’s independent inspection of the flyover was carried out after tests last year revealed that the bridge may be heavier than initially thought.
The flyovers had previously been closed in the 1980s for repairs and further remedial works were carried out in 2005 and 2013 as part on a regular maintenance regime.
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