£1.8m bridge maintenance work gets go-ahead on key Sunderland routes

Bridges are set to receive a multi-million pound makeover after council bosses backed plans for essential maintenance works.

By The Newsroom
Thursday, 18 July, 2019, 06:00
The interchange on Washington Highway.

Sunderland City Council’s cabinet discussed proposals for two major highways projects on Tuesday, July 16.

The new plans will see nearly £2million invested into key structures in Washington.

Under the proposals, Pattison Road/Nissan Way over the A1231 Sunderland Highway and the Low Barmston Access Bridge are set for improvements.

A programme of works started in 2018 – with the first phase including re-waterproofing the bridge decks and replacement parapets.

The second phase covers the re-painting of steel beams and concrete repairs to the Nissan Interchange Bridge at a cost of £800,000.

In action, the works aim to minimise disruption on the A1231 and in the vicinity of Nissan and will take place between November 2019 and May 2020.

According to a cabinet report, delaying works could lead to increased repair costs and safety risks to the public.

Council bosses also agreed a further programme of works on the A182 Washington Highway.

Works will focus on interchange bridges with a mixture of re-waterproofing, concrete repairs and re-painting and surfacing.

Bridges in line for works include:

Galleries South Interchange at the junction with Castle Road Galleries North Interchange at the junction with A1231 Sunderland Highway Parsons Interchange at the junction with A1290 Havannah Road

Works will take place between January and May next year with the first phase costing an estimated £1million.

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Phase two works will also incorporate highway structures from A195 / Princess Anne Interchange to C502 Bonemill Lane junction.

The changes were welcomed by cabinet members, including head of children, learning and skills, Coun Louise Farthing.

“I think it gives me comfort as a resident of Washington and I’m sure for people in Sunderland who travel to Washington, that bridges are maintained regularly,” she said.

“It was about a year ago when a bridge collapsed in Italy and it was devastating to see that.

“We need to publicise the fact that we do carry out regular maintenance so residents have that assurance that they’re safe.”

Council leader, Coun Graeme Miller, added: “As a Washington resident and councillor I would like to say this council is clearly spending money in Washington.

“It’s millions of pounds of investment in the transport infrastructure that Washington residents need and use everyday.

“I hope it puts a sword to the lie that goes out from our political opponents about how money is only spent in Sunderland.

“We tend to forget that Sunderland includes the areas of Sunderland, Washington and Houghton/Hetton.”

Funding for the bridge works will be drawn from the council’s existing capital programme.

Following the decision, council bosses will now start the process to appoint contractors.