Lincoln’s Pelham Bridge closure headache is over, as the road reopened to traffic and pedestrians in the early hours of Monday morning to signal the end of over 11 weeks of work.
The 60-year-old bridge, opened by the Queen in 1958, closed on June 7 for essential repair and maintenance works, prompting traffic issues in Lincoln city centre.
Five expansion joints were cut into the bridge during the works, as well as seeing the road and footpaths resurfaced and more safety barriers put along the side.
Finishing touches were added to the bridge before it reopened at 4am on Monday, August 23, including installation of signage and painting the lines on road markings.
There were fears when the original reopening date was delayed for a week at the start of August, due to concrete issues and corroded street lighting, but the road is now fully operational again after the 11-week project.
There are still some works to be completed around the expansion joint where the pedestrian stairs join the bridge, though this will not affect traffic on the road itself.
It is welcome news for various commuters and businesses in the city, as they had to adjust to one of Lincoln’s key access routes being closed off for almost three months.
Traffic flowed through the city centre much smoother on Monday morning, particularly around the High Street and Newland areas, which were badly affected by the closures.
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Local bus routes also had to spend the closures accommodating for more traffic build-up, as well as changing routes so as not to cross over Pelham Bridge while it was closed.
Cllr Richard Davies, executive member for highways at Lincolnshire County Council, said: “We maintain over 1,500 bridges across Lincolnshire, and Pelham is one of our longest and busiest. A re-waterproofing job like this was always going to be a big operation and I’d like to thank residents in Lincoln for their patience whilst we did these repairs.
“I know the closure has caused disruption, but after stripping the bridge deck back and finding it in a worse condition than we’d anticipated, it shows how necessary these works were.
“We took advantage of the bridge closure and carried out necessary resurfacing along Canwick Road too, meaning much less disruption for drivers on that side of the city, as well as smoother, safer journeys.”