Network Rail has submitted a planning application to City of Edinburgh Council for proposals to install a bridge walk and visitor hub at the iconic Forth Bridge.
Under the plans, the public will be able to access the world-famous structure and explore its heritage as well as the outstanding views from 367 ft (110m) above sea level.
The proposals will see construction of a bridge walk and reception hub on the South Queensferry side of the UNESCO World Heritage site, which will be used for preparing those heading out on the bridge walk as well as providing an access point to the structure.
Groups of between 12 and 15 people will put on safety harnesses before being led out onto the bridge’s south cantilever, walking up to a viewing point at the top using walkways built into the structure.
Up to three groups an hour will be permitted on the bridge, with each tour expected to last around two and a half hours.
It is estimated the bridge walk experience could attract around 85,000 visitors, bringing real benefits to the local community.
Longer-term plans to create visitor facilities at the north end of the bridge are also under development and could see future access to the top of the north cantilever, via a lift.
Alan Ross, Network Rail Scotland’s director of engineering and asset management, said: “The Forth Bridge is an engineering icon and the plans we have submitted to deliver a bridge walk experience will offer a unique and memorable visit to one of Scotland’s most loved structures.
“From the engineering genius behind its design, to the historical accounts of its construction and its crucial role in Scotland’s operational railway, the bridge really is a national treasure and there is real appetite to take these plans forward.”
The application information can be veiwed at:
Planning permission – 19/04116/FUL – https://citydev-portal.edinburgh.gov.uk/idoxpa-web/applicationDetails.do?activeTab=summary&keyVal=PWZZGREWIL000
Conservation Area Consent – 19/04117/CON – https://citydev-portal.edinburgh.gov.uk/idoxpa-web/applicationDetails.do?activeTab=summary&keyVal=PWZZH9EWIL300
Listed Building Consent – 19/04118/LBC – https://citydev-portal.edinburgh.gov.uk/idoxpa-web/applicationDetails.do?activeTab=summary&keyVal=PWZZHUEWIL600