Four year deal

Clyde’s Erskine Bridge in line for an £18m re-spray

Erskine Bridge

Spanning the Clyde: Erskine Bridge will get a makeover


Erskine Bridge over the Clyde is to be repainted in a four-year contract worth £18 million to the company that carried out essential repairs to the broken trusses on the Forth Road Bridge.

Opened in 1971, Erskine Bridge is the longest cable-stayed bridge of its type in the world at 1.3km and was last year awarded Category A status by Historic Environment Scotland in recognition of its special architectural interest. It carries 40,000 vehicles each day.

The repainting contract will be carried out by Spencer Group which has worked on the crossing for almost 20 years.

Scotland Transerv is the principal designer and the engineer managing the latest works. COWI (formerly Flint and Neill) was appointed to help produce the design and will assist with management. The works will also involve refurbishing the bridge’s footpaths and removal of redundant gas mains.

The contract comes after Spencer Group completed a £10m project to repair a fracture that caused the closure of the Forth Road Bridge. That scheme involved the replacement of the truss end links, which connect the bridge deck to the towers, with a unique new sliding bearing system designed by Transport Scotland’s consultants Fairhurst.

The company has recently delivered another major maintenance project, on the Humber Bridge, close to Spencer Group’s headquarters in Hull. It has designed an innovative under-deck gantry for the Kessock Bridge, near Inverness, for BEAR Scotland, on behalf of Transport Scotland. The motorised gantry, which is currently being fabricated, will enable easier, year-round access for maintenance.

The Erskine Bridge works will be the most extensive maintenance painting of the landmark crossing for a generation. The project will require 46,000 litres of paint covering 60,000 square metres of the structure.

During abrasive blasting processes and spray painting, sections of the bridge will be wrapped in a high-strength tent that will capture all the residue and ensure minimal impact on bridge users, trains on the rail line running below it, or river traffic. It will also prevent spillage into the River Clyde.

Bridges Projects Manager James Barnes, said: “Our approach to the project is to limit the amount of time we will occupy the carriageways on the bridge.”

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