Tram work on track as major new bridge is moved into place
YOU wait months for a new bridge to be installed in the city – and then two come along in a matter of days.
A 46m-long bridge was pushed into place over railway tracks in Lenton over the weekend.
Weighing 640 tonnes, the steel Lenton Lane bridge will carry trams over the railway on their journey between the city centre and Toton park-and-ride.
It is the second of five bridges to be installed by Taylor Woodrow Alstom as part of the tram extension.
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It comes just two weeks after work started on another bridge at Nottingham Railway Station.
At Lenton yesterday, Councillor Jane Urquhart, portfolio holder for planning and transport at Nottingham City Council, said: "It's a really big day and constructions like this show people that the tram really is coming. When the tram starts running, we will have fantastic connectivity between the city centre and major employers and provide a reliable alternative to the car."
Over a period of four months, the bridge has been constructed in a compound at Lenton Lane Industrial Estate.
It was moved into place over 28 hours, from just after midnight yesterday to 4am today. Among those watching the bridge being pushed into place were father and son Mark and Jedidiah Beeston, of Sneinton.
Four-year-old Jedidiah said: "I like seeing the big machines working and all the people doing their jobs."
And 37-year-old Mark added: "It's interesting to come down and see it all take shape – it's a big project and we heard they were moving the bridge today, so we came to see what was going on."
Despite the cold weather and occasional snow flurry, passers-by took photos and watched the work take place.
Andrew Marshall, 42, of The Meadows, said: "The bridge is going to be a part of the city for a long time, so I thought I'd watch it put in place."
The installation was planned to coincide with scheduled railway engineering works between Derby and Nottingham to minimise disruption to rail passengers.
The bridge was driven into position using four 40-wheel vehicles called self-propelled modular transporters. They carried the bridge across the railway and lifted it up on to concrete supports either side of the tracks.
The railway was protected by timber matting.
Martin Carroll, project director for Taylor Woodrow Alstom, said: "Only two weeks ago, the team handled the station bridge launch and are now using another technically challenging technique to position this bridge."
The two new lines from the city centre to Beeston and Chilwell and Clifton are due to be in operation by late 2014.
How will the new tram lines affect you? E-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.