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‘Supply chain issue’ delays East London road bridge construction

ardleigh green bridge

A “supply chain issue” has been blamed for the construction delay to a major road bridge replacement scheme in East London. 

In papers published ahead of a board meeting this week, Transport for London (TfL) revealed that the final phase of works on the £49M Ardleigh Green Bridge replacement has been delayed due to an “issue in the supply chain”.

The project is to replace the 90-year-old Ardleigh Green road bridge in Romford with a wider structure to increase headroom for Crossrail and domestic trains scheduled to run beneath it. It will also include improved facilities for pedestrians and cyclists.

The third and final phase of work to demolish and remove the redundant trestle piers that supported the old bridge and the overhead line equipment for the trains, at track side was due to take place in December last year. This is now expected to take place in the first quarter of this year.

A source close to the project told New Civil Engineer that the rescheduling occurred after a key sub-contractor pulled out of the project “a matter of weeks” before starting work. The decision was because of a “disagreement over costing around works to be done”, another source said.

“Unfortunately, due to unavailability of a key, safety critical supplier the demolition works could not take place,” a TfL spokesperson said.

TfL is working with and Network Rail and principal contractor Hochtief to identify options to complete the work.

Referring to the work, TfL board papers state: “The final phase of the railway-side of the bridge has been rescheduled to 2019 following an issue in the supply chain.

“This has no impact on the highway works but will delay completion. All costs associated with this issue are to be borne by the principal contractor.”

A TfL spokesperson added that plans to open all four lanes of traffic to the public by spring 2019 remain on track.

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