Drivers braced for road delays as bridge work begins

Corrosion at Squires Gate Bridge
Corrosion at Squires Gate Bridge

Motorists will have to brace themselves for disruption and diversions as work is set to begin on another one of Blackpool’s major routes.

Essential work at Squires Gate Bridge will start on Tuesday, November, 7 from 5am as part of Blackpool’s ongoing bridges improvement programme.

While the work is undertaken Squires Gate Bridge will be closed to vehicles between Sandbridge Place and Hillcrest Road but open to pedestrians.

It will involve replacing the roadway, plus supporting steel and concrete beams. It is expected to be completed by the end of March as long as weather does not cause delays.

Over time, the reinforced concrete beams and the steel supporting Squires Gate Bridge have corroded and need to be replaced.

Fred Jackson, Blackpool Council Cabinet Member for Highways, said: “Many of the bridges in Blackpool need repair or maintenance attention. To ensure that these access routes including Squires Gate Bridge will remain open to traffic into the future and are safe to use it is essential that this work is undertaken.

“This work has been planned to follow the end of the illuminations to minimise disruption. However, we apologise in advance for any delays which may be caused on the roads and thank residents and commuters in advance for bearing with us while we improve Blackpool’s roads.”

Traffic travelling northbound will be diverted along Clifton Drive, Burlington Road West, Bond Street, Watson Road and Lytham Road.

Southbound traffic will be sent along Lytham Road, Watson Road, Bond Street, Burlington Road West and Clifton Drive.

An alternative signed diversion route will go through St Annes.

Signals at junctions across the town will be altered to help traffic flow in the area.

Blackpool Transport Services will also temporarily reposition the bus stops located on Squires Gate Lane and Harrowside.

During this time Harrowside Bridge will also remain closed to traffic for repairs and the bill for both rail bridges is set to be £2.9m.

This work is part of a programme to repair ten Blackpool bridges during the next four years at a total cost of £11.365m.

The money is made up by contributions from Blackpool Council, the Department for Transport’s Challenge Fund and the Lancashire Enterprise Partnership’s Growth Fund.