Work continuing to deliver Mersey Gateway
Halton Borough Council has emphasised that it is doing all that it can to deliver the new Mersey Gateway bridge, which will alleviate the gridlock caused when essential maintenance is being carried out on the Silver Jubilee Bridge.
The recent work, undertaken by National Grid, brought traffic chaos to the roads of Halton and the surrounding area, as a result of the bridge being reduced in capacity to one lane of traffic in each direction.
The Secretaries of State for Transport and Communities & Local Government are expected to announce their decision on whether the new crossing can be built early in 2010 following the delivery of a report in December by Alan Gray, the Inspector who conducted this summer’s Public Inquiry.
The project team and members of the council are now preparing for procurement, where tenders will be invited for the construction and operation of the new crossing. Should government grant planning approval the project will be in the best possible position to proceed.
Tony McDermott, Leader of Halton Borough Council and Chair of the Mersey Gateway Executive Board said:
“I share the frustration amongst those who battled across the Silver Jubilee Bridge through the essential works that took place last week.
“The lane closures were needed to enable National Grid to make urgent repairs. Coupled with problems on the M6 and M62 it meant gridlock locally in Halton, in Warrington and across the main regional motorway network, showing just how important the river crossing in Halton is to the strategic road network in the region.
“A new bridge that provides a reliable crossing point will be of great value not just to Halton, but also the long-term economic prosperity of the region as a whole.”