Residents have met with Council representatives to discuss their concerns about bus diversions during work to replace a bridge on one of Stockton Borough’s busiest routes.
The concerns were raised in relation to Stockton-on-Tees Borough Council’s proposal to divert buses through a residential area during a project to replace Londonderry Bridge, on Durham Road.
In response to the concerns, the Council stepped back from the proposal and has now met with residents as part of a review aimed at establishing a better way of managing the bus diversions.
The scheme, led by the Council in partnership with the Environment Agency, will reduce the flood risk to around 150 properties in the area and is expected to take around six months to complete.
Councillor Nigel Cooke, the Council’s Cabinet Member for Regeneration and Transport, said: “The review is ongoing as part of it we were keen to hear the views of local residents, as well as their ideas as to how we can manage the bus diversions in the best way possible.
“It’s a difficult situation because, while the replacement of the bridge would protect around 150 homes from flooding, it would also disrupt one of the Borough’s busiest bus routes and we’d also be keen to ensure people are not left isolated by the diversions.
“In reality, there is no way of delivering a major project of this nature without causing significant disruption and I think the residents now have a better understanding of the complexities we are facing, while for our part, we have a better understanding of their concerns too.
“We will be in contact with residents as soon as we are in a position to bring forward an alternative proposal.”
The replacement of Londonderry Bridge is planned as part of the wider Lustrum Beck Flood Alleviation Scheme.
The way the bridge is constructed has been a major contributor to serious flooding in recent years because its arches obstruct the flow of Lustrum Beck.
The Council, in partnership with the Environment Agency, plans to demolish it and replace it with a new, single span bridge that will allow water to flow freely.