Locals to benefit as new bridge opens

Published: Monday 22 April 2024

This image shows Council Leader Joe Fagan and Councillor Robert Brown at the official opening of Clyde Bridge

A new bridge spanning 90 metres over the River Clyde has been officially opened.

The replacement Clyde Bridge, on Pettinain Road just outside the village of Carstairs Junction, was opened by Council Leader Joe Fagan and the Chair of the Community and Enterprise Resources Committee, Councillor Robert Brown.

They were joined by local councillors for the area, community council representatives and staff from South Lanarkshire Council, Eric Wright Civil Engineering and Mabey Bridge Ltd.

The new bridge replaces the old one which was closed to traffic in August 2018 for safety reasons due to severe structural defects.

Councillor Brown said: “The old bridge dated from 1912 and was under weight restrictions from 1956 before being closed to pedestrians and traffic in 2018. The new bridge is superb – it will be a local landmark. 

“The new Clyde Bridge will connect local communities, help the movement of goods and commerce in the area and cut travel times. 

“It has been long awaited but will make a huge difference to local people and local businesses in Carstairs Junction and beyond. Unlike the old bridge it has provision for pedestrians and cyclists crossing the bridge.”

Councillor Fagan said: “This new bridge restores a much needed and well used link for the local community.

“As well as vehicles, it will also promote active travel with pedestrian access, and it feeds into the wider cycle network for the area.”

Gavin Hulme, Operations Director at Eric Wright Civil Engineering said “We’re proud to have worked in collaboration with South Lanarkshire Council to deliver this technically demanding replacement bridge over the river Clyde just twelve months after starting on site. It’s been a privilege to work on this project and deliver this much-needed infrastructure that will connect the community.”

The original structure over the River Clyde was constructed in 1912. Weight restrictions were first introduced on the bridge in 1956 and amended further in 1994. The bridge closed in 2018.

The contract for the construction phase of the project was awarded to Eric Wright Civil Engineering in November 2022, after a first tender awarded to another company had to be aborted. 

A single span Delta bridge designed and installed by Mabey Bridge Ltd was selected as the new structure to be installed. The project required utility apparatus owned by BT Openreach and Scottish Water to be temporarily diverted and ultimately installed in the new bridge.

The new bridge has a single span of 90 metres length. Individual bridge components were delivered to the site and assembled and installed by specialist operatives. The installation of the bridge was achieved via a staged assembly and launch procedure which took six weeks to complete.

The total weight of steelwork in the new structure is 353 tonnes. Around 520 cubic metres of concrete were imported to the site to construct the cast insitu pile caps and abutments which form the bridge substructure. Approximately 6,400 cubic metres of fill material was imported to form new and realigned road embankments.