THE replacement of a bridge on one of Stockton Borough’s busiest roads is on course for completion this week – well ahead of schedule.
Stockton-on-Tees Borough Council is replacing Londonderry Bridge, on Durham Road, as part of the Lustrum Beck flood alleviation scheme.
The scheme is being delivered by the Council in partnership with the Environment Agency and will reduce the flood risk to more than 150 homes in the area.
It had been due for completion by the end of the winter but the new bridge is already in place and will be opened to motorists on Friday afternoon (December 9).
Councillor Nigel Cooke, Cabinet Member for Regeneration and Transport, added: “The replacement of the bridge has gone very well indeed – we’re delighted to be finished well ahead of schedule and in plenty of time for Christmas.
“We’d like to convey our heartfelt thanks to local people for their patience they have shown throughout the delivery of this essential project, which will complement the work the Environment Agency has been doing in nearby areas.
“Thanks also to the contractor, Balfour Beatty, who have been very active in the community by putting on events such as litter picks, coffee mornings and safety talks in local schools.”
The Council’s Cabinet Member for Environment and Housing, Councillor Mike Smith, added: “The replacement of Londonderry Bridge is an essential part of the broader Lustrum Beck flood alleviation scheme to help reduce the flood risk to homes.
“The old bridge was a major contributor to serious flooding because its arches obstructed the beck’s flow. Replacing it with a new, single span bridge will help reduce the risk of the kind of devastating flooding we’ve seen in recent years.”
The Environment Agency has built new flood walls along the beck at Bedford Street and Duddon Walk, which tie in with a raised embankment at Newtown.
This follows the completion of a new lifting screen at the culvert at Primrose Hill and the previously completed flood wall at Bishopton Road.
The Environment Agency’s Ted Thomas, Project Manager, said: “The flood walls and embankment have been completed on schedule. In the New Year we will do some minor works to tie the new flood wall and bridge together, and to remove the old flood wall just downstream of Bishopton Road.
“Now the bridge replacement is complete, we’ll turn our attention to the next phase of work, which is to store extra flood water in the catchment upstream of Stockton and create new habitat, which is likely to begin in 2017.”