Network Rail has made major progress on a project to upgrade Bromham Road bridge in Bedfordshire and it is now open for pedestrians and cyclists, which will help to maintain social distancing.
Network Rail has opened the footpath on the south side of the bridge for pedestrians, as well as temporarily opening half of one carriageway to cyclists. This means that people can access the new bridge when they are out exercising, whilst following Government guidelines and staying at least two metres apart.
Bromham Road closed in June 2019 and access has been maintained for pedestrians and dismounted cyclists via a temporary footbridge, which is being removed. At the start of lockdown, the road closure was extended until Summer 2020, which has allowed part of the road to safely open for cyclists whilst work continues on the project.
Network Rail engineers have already carried out vital work to demolish Bromham Road bridge and reconstruct it at a raised height. The improvements are part of the £1.5billion Midland Main Line Upgrade and will provide a safe distance for overhead line equipment to pass beneath the bridge, enabling the line between Bedford, Kettering and Corby to be electrified.
The final stages of the project are now taking place, which include work on the embankment and removing the temporary scaffold bridge. To allow this work to take place safely, Bromham Road is expected to remain closed to motorists until Summer 2020 with a signposted diversionary route in place.
Network Rail is taking all necessary precautions to keep workers safe and continues to follow Public Health England’s guidelines around social distancing whilst this essential work is carried out.
Gavin Crook, Principal Programme Sponsor for Network Rail, said: “It’s great to see major progress being made on the project to upgrade Bromham Road bridge and the new, wider footpath will benefit people in the area.
“Pedestrians and cyclists in Bedford can now access the new bridge over the railway when they are out exercising, whilst following Government guidelines and staying at least two metres apart.
“We would like to thank people in Bedford for their continued patience whilst this essential work is carried out. Once the Midland Main Line Upgrade is complete, passengers will benefit from increased capacity and more reliable services.”