Preparatory work ahead of the demolition of the rail section of the A955 Leven Rail (Bawbee) bridge is now underway.
Network Rail is replacing the abutments and deck of the road bridge which is suffering from significant deterioration and showing signs of chlorine contamination and corrosion. The work is to remove a long-standing weight restriction from the structure.
The work on the bridge, which sits above the site of the new Leven station, is funded by Fife Council and is being delivered on their behalf by Network Rail as part of the Levenmouth Rail Link programme.
With the road now closed to both road traffic and pedestrians, the area has been fenced-off to protect the community from coming into contact with machinery carrying out the work.
Street-furniture – road signs, lamp posts etc – is being removed before the existing road surface will be lifted and the bridge parapets (side walls) removed.
It is anticipated that the actual demolition of the structure itself will be from Friday May 19 with the work complete by the end of the month. The start of work on the replacement structure will immediately follow.
The temporary footbridge adjacent to the Bawbee bridge will also be closed during this time. Access across the river will be via the footbridge across the temporary road bridge which was recently opened.
Sean Clemie, project manager for bridge works, said: “With the temporary road bridge in place to maintain access across the river, we can now focus on the main task – demolition and reconstruction of the Bawbee bridge.
“Obviously, with the main element of the work underway, we have fenced off the bridge and the adjacent temporary structure will also be out of use during the demolition for safety reasons.
“We will prepare the structure for demolition at the weekend and after the debris has been cleared, we will immediately start work on the construction of the new bridge. From then we will enable reinstatement of the utilities - essentially putting everything that is needed back on the bridge.”
The temporary road-bridge over the River Leven will support circa 18,000 vehicle movements per day during major work to demolish the structure.
The diversion route takes traffic from the A955/B933 roundabout, through the leisure centre car park and across the river via the temporary bridge. Traffic joins the existing road network at the new roundabout that has been constructed on South Street (B932).
Key dates for the work to replace the Leven (Bawbee) bridge: