The Scottish public is to be involved in the choosing of the new permanent name for the Forth Replacement Crossing.
Transport Minister Keith Brown has asked officials involved in the project to begin the process for choosing a permanent name saying that “finding an appropriate name for the new bridge is a matter of considerable interest both locally and nationally”.
He said: “While we should remember that the Forth Replacement Crossing is the name of the project to deliver the bridge, not the name of the completed bridge, I would like to have an open and transparent process for deciding the name that allows all of Scotland to be involved.
“Details of this process are likely to be announced during 2012 to allow a name to be chosen in time for the expected opening of the new bridge in 2016.”
Brown also announced that Transport Scotland officials are also preparing to submit a planning application for the project’s Contact and Education Centre which will see its role as a community engagement hub during construction combined with a new permanent national Traffic Control Centre.
The news follows the announcement on 21 March that the Forth Crossing Bridge Constructors consortium has been chosen as the preferred bidder for the Forth Replacement Crossing.
The consortium - comprising Dragados, Hochtief, American Bridge International and Morrison Construction - bid to build the bridge and connecting roads for £790M at today’s prices, significantly below the initial estimated cost range of £900M to £1.2bn.
The centre will act as a central point for public information and consultation during the construction process, in line with the requirements of the project’s Code of Construction Practice, as well as providing space for a visitor exhibition on the project and conducting educational activities around the construction.
In addition, the planned building, on land adjacent to the Forth Road Bridge administration office at South Queensferry, would also provide a new permanent home for Traffic Scotland’s National Control Centre that will monitor the operation of Scotland’s road network including acting as a coordinating hub during emergencies, disruption and periods of severe weather.
Brown added: “The construction of the Forth Replacement Crossing project will clearly be hugely significant for local communities and, as Scotland’s largest infrastructure development for a generation, will also attract considerable national and international attention.
“Proactive public consultation, engagement and the sharing of information has been central to the project’s development to date and we are committed to providing a Contact and Education Centre that offers the public a dedicated facility for information, education and consultation purposes during construction.
“This facility will be an important place for people to get up to date information about the project and speak directly to representatives from Transport Scotland’s team and its contractors.”