Work on three bridges along the A82 begins next week (January 9) meaning likely delays for travellers through until Spring time.
An investment of £1.2M from Transport Scotland has been awarded for improvements to the A82 Laggan Swing Bridge, Aberchalder Swing Bridge and Invergarry Bridge. All are set for upgrades which will help strengthen and prolong the resilience of each bridge, ensuring they remain in a safe working condition for years to come.
Laggan Swing Bridge and Aberchalder Swing Bridge will be painted with a specialist protective layer to help prevent the steelwork from deteriorating. Specialist contractors will apply a new protective coating system which is designed to last for a minimum of 25 years. This work is similar to previous schemes that were completed on the Banavie and Fort Augustus Swing Bridges in March 2016.
At Invergarry Bridge the scheme will involve refurbishment and repairs to both the bridge deck as well as underneath the structure, which was originally built in the 1930s, to ensure it continues to function safely for years to come. The work will take place on the bridge deck and will involve resurfacing and waterproofing, replacing the bridge joints and realigning the width of the carriageway. A second phase of work at Invergarry Bridge will get underway in the spring, however, this will take place underneath the structure, meaning little impact to traffic.
Work on all three bridges is scheduled to begin on Monday 9 January, with the works at Invergarry Bridge taking place for up to four weeks, and the improvements on Laggan and Aberchalder Bridges expected to take up to ten weeks to complete. The A82 will remain open throughout the works with temporary traffic lights in place at each location for safety while works are completed.
The swing bridge schemes need to be completed during the winter months as the Caledonian Canal is closed to canal traffic, meaning teams can access the bridges to apply the specialist coating. Environmental restrictions mean the works at Invergarry Bridge need to be completed over winter due to the possibility of protected bats roosting in the structure in the summer months. The impact to motorists is also reduced during the off-peak season, when traffic flows are generally lighter.
Speaking of the bridge refurbishment, Eddie Ross, BEAR Scotland’s North West Representative said: “This major programme of bridge refurbishment for all three structures will ensure that they will continue to function safely for years to come.
“We will continue to do all we can to minimise disruption during these works and our teams will look to complete the schemes as quickly and safely as possible, however we would advise motorists to plan their journeys in advance by checking the Traffic Scotland website for further information and leave a little extra time to reach their destination.”
Real time journey information is available from Traffic Scotland on www.trafficscotland.org (external link) or twitter @trafficscotland.