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Facelift for Manchester city centre rail bridge

A key railway bridge in Manchester city centre is getting a £600,000 facelift by Network Rail to keep it in prime condition for the next 25 years.

The bridge, which spans the busy A56 Chester Road close to Deansgate railway station, carries a combination of over 400 local and long distance passenger and freight trains a day and is vital for the operation of trains from all points of the compass that pass through Manchester.

Built in 1849, the cast iron structure is suffering from corrosion so Network Rail’s contractor Sisk Rail has been carrying out repairs to the “inside” of the bridge over a number of weeks at times when the railway line has been closed.

Now the public faces of the bridge need attention so they will be repaired, grit blasted to remove old paintwork, primed and repainted between now and the end of August.

To gain access to the bridge and carry out the work, scaffolding will have to be erected and this will mean a combination of partial and full road closures as the project progresses. The road closure details and diversionary routes will be publicised in advance. However, pedestrian access under the bridge will be maintained at all times.

When the work is finished, the bridge will be predominantly red, black and cream to match other rail bridges in the city.

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