Work on the Hammersmith Bridge Restoration Project will start on-site in February 2022, following the extensive safety investigations by world-leading specialist bridge engineers working for Hammersmith & Fulham Council (H&F).
Their engineers have now developed an alternative £8.9m stabilisation programme for the bridge, saving local and national taxpayers £21m compared to the previous Transport for London (TfL) proposal.
H&F approved the investment in full, rather than waiting for the Department for Transport (DfT) and TfL to pay their share. It is anticipated that DfT and TfL will subsequently reimburse the council with their one-third share, as announced last year.
The stabilisation works are necessary to prevent future closures of the 135-year-old Grade II* listed bridge to pedestrians, cyclists and river traffic below. They will take about nine months to deliver, a considerably shorter period than the previous scheme. Works to reopen the bridge to buses and cars will occur following the completion of the stabilisation project.
As part of the stabilisation works, H&F Council’s specialist contractors will be removing all the casings of the four corner cast-iron pedestals. The contractors are FM Conway and their sub-contractors, Freyssinet Ltd and Taziker Industrial Ltd.
Once the four casings have been removed, the contractor is required to fill the pedestals with concrete, install steel frames around them and jack up elements of the structure to replace the bearings.
The casing removals and jacking operations will use cranes positioned on the carriageway at both entrances to the bridge.
While this work is taking place, we are determined to keep the bridge open to pedestrians and cyclists and restrict any necessary closures to off-peak times.
The carriageway will need to be closed to enable the works to be undertaken safely, meaning that cyclists and e-scooter users will no longer have access to the main carriageway. Instead, they will have to dismount and share the footways with pedestrians.
The provision of temporary footway ramps installed alongside the pedestals will enable pedestrians, dismounted cyclists, and e-scooter users to be diverted away from the works and onto the footways.
Additionally, to ensure the safety of bridge users, the council will be introducing a one-way system for all users. These changes will be prominently sign-posted at the entrances to the bridge, and safety marshals will also be in attendance. The towpath on the Barnes side of the bridge will remain open.
The contractors have advised that the access over the bridge will only be interrupted for safety reasons when jacking operations are in progress. This will only be undertaken for short periods during off-peak hours, and advance notification will be given to residents and users.
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