Pelham Bridge in Lincoln closed for ten weeks for essential repairs on Monday morning, with city centre routes seeing long queues as traffic was diverted.
The bridge is a key route to the centre of Lincoln will be resurfaced, as well as having a new course of water-proofing installed, with expansion joints replaced.
Once complete, a new barrier will be installed between the footpath and the road, increasing pedestrian safety.
Heavy traffic built up on the first day of Pelham Bridge’s closure on Monday morning, with some areas of the city centre gridlocked.
This was in particular on diversion routes along the East West Link Road and Tentercroft Street, crossing University Bridge and using Newland and Wigford Way, rejoining Melville Street.
Drivers have been advised to use the Lincoln Eastern Bypass as much as possible during the closures, which was coping well with the extra traffic on Monday, with traffic sensors showing ‘green’.
Buses were seen to be held up in the traffic, after Stagecoach announced that all services south of the city would divert via University Bridge (view the new amended timetables here).
Lincolnshire County Council has said that the works have been held until the full opening of the Lincoln Eastern Bypass, in order to allow for a safe diversion around the city.
Richard Waters, structures engineer at Lincolnshire County Council, said: “The signed diversion will take traffic over University Bridge whilst Pelham Bridge is closed.
“We are advising drivers to use the Lincoln Eastern Bypass and other routes where possible, to help ease traffic in the city centre.
“We’re starting the works now because the bypass is complete – taking some of that traffic out of the centre – and because traffic is lightest over the bridge during the summer.”
Richard Waters added: “Despite some delays, I don’t think the traffic this morning was as bad as it could have been, so I’d like to thank those drivers who avoided travelling at peak times or took alternative routes to help ease the pressure.
“I know this will still cause some disruption in Lincoln, especially during busy times. So thank you for bearing with us whilst we do these essential repairs on the bridge.”