GRIMSBY’S new Garth Lane footbridge will start to take shape in December as detailed work begins on its construction.
With delivery and installation due in the spring, planning permission has now been passed by North East Lincolnshire Council, giving the green light for materials to be ordered and the build to start.
Once installed it will provide safer passage across the River Freshney from the town centre to Fisherman’s Wharf for pedestrians, with new CCTV and lighting.
As reported the old bridge has now been removed with pedestrian diversions via Alexandra Road in place until next spring, when the new 5m-wide structure is due to be installed. Meanwhile, bridge abutment work continues along with preparation for the new tiered seating on the riverside.
The bridge is being designed and installed by North Yorkshire specialists SH Structures, whose projects include the International Bomber Command Spire in Lincoln and Hull’s new Princess Quay Footbridge. The new bridge seeks to reflect a little of the area’s maritime heritage with its mast-like feature depicting ships’ rigging. It has also been designed to incorporate the hanging of artwork, or to look equally as good without – the drawing shows this feature, where the words ‘Explore Grimsby Heritage’ are.
Tim Burton of SH Structures confirmed that the primary design work had now been completed with final works to the ‘masts/rigging’ underway and fabrication due to start before Christmas.
He explained how a 3d model of the bridge had been developed which would be used to produce fabrication drawings to guide the platers and welders fabricating the structure.
“We use the model to prepare cutting details for each individual steel plate and produce assembly drawings to detail how the various pieces go together. Every component is modelled, right down to each nut and bolt and they all have a unique identity code within the model, so we have full traceability for each piece,” said Tim.
All the fabrication work takes place at the firm’s base in Sherburn-in-Elmet. Once complete, protective treatment and paint would be applied in Scunthorpe before transportation to Grimsby for lifting into position using a large mobile crane, he said.
“We will be preparing lifting plans and we can model the bridge on the delivery trailers, also establishing the centre of gravity so we know how to lift each item safely and in the correct orientation,” he added.
Central to the Grimsby HAZ, (Heritage Action Zone), further works in the £3.5m Garth Lane scheme include new tiered seating/walkway down to the riverside, new planting and landscaping, wildflower areas, and seating including fish benches that have been carved using wood from the felled willow tree.
The project, which is being managed by ENGIE on behalf of North East Lincolnshire Council, is supported by £1.3m secured by the Humber Local Enterprise Partnership from the Local Growth Fund as part of the Government’s commitment to the Northern Powerhouse. Further funding has come from The Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government with funding released as a result of the Grimsby Town Deal.
“What you see in this area are the sights and sounds of regeneration and positive change. This typifies the hard work that is being put in by everyone to create a new future for the town and its people,” said North East Lincolnshire Council’s Cabinet member for regeneration, Cllr John Fenty.
“We thank people for their patience and understanding during these works. The results will show that any inconvenience will have been well worth it,” he added.