Contractor Morgan Est was this week putting the finishing touches to a temporary bridge has that will re-establish a road connection through flood-torn Workington in Cumbria.
The structure has now been pushed into position and will open to traffic on Wednesday 21 April - five weeks ahead of schedule.
The structure was constructed for Cumbria County Council and provides a direct road link over the River Derwent connecting the two sides of Workington that were cut off from one another when last November’s floods caused the loss of and damage to the town’s bridges.
Surfacing on approach works, drainage and finishing works are being prepared prior to the opening of the 350t, 67m long span, two-way road bridge. The bridge was constructed in 72 days at a cost of £4.6M.
“We’ve worked with a range of different partners to get this bridge open as soon as humanly possible - and it has sometimes involved superhuman efforts and round-the-clock working,” said Cumbria County Council chief executive Jill Stannard.
“It’s excellent news for the people of Workington that the bridge is going to be open to traffic, cyclists and pedestrians more than a month ahead of schedule. People across west Cumbria have suffered from nearly five months of inconvenience and disruption to their usual routines since the devastating floods and we understand their frustrations and thank them for the way they’ve gone about dealing with it.”
“It has sometimes involved superhuman efforts and round-the-clock working,”
Cumbria County Council chief executive Jill Stannard
The remains of the former Northside bridge, which collapsed following the floods, will now be demolished. The existing temporary footbridge remains open. The 51m long footbridge was constructed by the Royal Engineers in under a week last December.