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Tug boats will today tow the new 250-tonne, 95m-span Lowry footbridge on a barge up the Manchester Ship Canal, before it is winched into place over the waterway this weekend.

The £45M Lottery-funded tied steel arch structure has been designed by consultant Parkman in association with Carlos Fernandez Casado of Madrid and is being constructed by Christiani & Nielsen. It will provide a link between the new £127M Lowry Centre at Salford Quays and the planned £28.5M Daniel Libeskind-designed Imperial War Museum alongside, and will lift to allow ships to pass below.

The completed structure will be towed 500m along the canal from Lengthline Ship Repairers yard and placed in position on four tubular steel support towers which have already been erected. Work to complete all connections will continue until Sunday, but the

bridge will not be in use until the Lowry Centre opens early in 2000.

The Imperial War Museum, for which project management was last week awarded to Gardiner & Theobald Management Services, will open a year later.

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