The next stage in the bridge replacement programme on the A830 is beginning, with work starting to replace Criche Bridge at Arieniskill at the end of May.
A report by the Press and Journal explained that this is the sixth bridge to be replaced along the iconic Highland route under a £10 million scheme of works.
This particular structure takes traffic over an environmentally sensitive waterway, which means the work has to be conducted during the summer months. While Criche Bridge is being restored and widened, a temporary bridge will be put in place.
In addition to a wider carriageway, the new bridge will also feature better safety protection and vehicle barrier containment.
BEAR Scotland will be carrying out the work, with the company’s north-west unit representative Eddie Ross explaining that there will be traffic management on site during the works phase.
He said that the company has taken steps to minimise disruption as much as possible, but offered the following advice to drivers: “We’d advise motorists to leave a little extra time to complete their journeys and hope road users will be pleased with the results.”
Prior to this project, BEAR Scotland carried out works on Ranochan Bridge, just outside Glenfinnan, which was under construction for six months. Stone from the old bridge was used to build the new structure and it’s been designed to fit in with the spectacular highland surroundings in which it’s situated.
It too has been widened, while other safety features including improved vehicle containment have also been included. According to the company, the bridge has a low-maintenance design, which will ensure its safety for years to come.
These are far from the only bridge works being undertaken in Scotland this year, with demolition works beginning on the southbound carriageway of the Stonehaven Bridge on the A90 at the end of March. This is the precursor to reconstruction work beginning, and once the southbound carriageway is completed, the northbound section will also be demolished and reconstructed.
The ultimate aim is to reduce congestion and pollution, as well as cutting journey times for drivers and improving safety on this stretch of road.
Overnight and weekend closures happened throughout April on the B979, which runs beneath the A90, to enable the construction team to carry out their work safely.
A spokesperson for Transport Scotland explained that the bridge works were only part of the project, with the B979 being widened at the same time as the demolition and construction works taking place.
Another bridge project is also planned for the A9, where proposals for a new bridge over the River Spey were unveiled in March for consultation. This is part of the project to turn the A9 between Perth and Inverness into a dual carriageway and this particular bridge will not only span the river, but also the Insh Marshes.
The bridge will be designed to minimise the impact on the landscape and these habitats, given their environmental importance.
Whatever stage you’re at with your bridge construction project, make sure you get the best advice about bearing installation. Speak to us today about our expertise in this area.