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Bridge beam lift for A1 upgrade

Six giant steel bridge beams will be lifted into place over the A1 near Scotch Corner this weekend as part of a major project to upgrade a 12 mile stretch of the road to a motorway.

The new bridge will allow engineers for Highways England to create a new local road over the A1 between Kneeton Lane and Scotch Corner – improving access to and from villages surrounding the route.

  • Drivers are being advised that the A1 in North Yorkshire will be closed between 8pm and 10am on Friday and Saturday night as contractors use a 1,000 tonne crane to lift each beam into place.

The bridge is being installed as part of a £380 million project to upgrade the existing dual carriageway to a three lane motorway between Leeming and Barton. The scheme will complete the missing link of motorway between London and Newcastle, using the M1 and A1(M), as well as improving journey times and increasing safety.

The steel beams are 2.1 metres deep, up to 61 metres long, and weigh up to 153 tonnes each – the equivalent of 12 double decker buses. Once the new beams have been installed, work can begin to construct the bridge deck.

Highways England project manager, Tom Howard, said:

This is a significant milestone for the scheme and a complex piece of engineering. Our contractor will be using major lifting equipment and it is essential we close the road overnight to ensure maximum safety to both road workers and road users alike.

The new bridge will help to link up communities on each side of the A1 and will be part of a new local road running between Kneeton Lane and Scotch Corner, which is being built during the major upgrade of the A1 to a motorway.

We’re are carrying out the bridge installation overnight at the weekend when traffic levels are at their lowest, and are advising drivers to plan their journeys in advance.

The A1 will be closed from 8pm on Friday 18 March until 10am on Saturday 19 March in both directions between Scotch Corner and junction 56 (Barton). The same closure will be in place on Saturday 19 March from 8pm until 10am on Sunday 20 March.

Highways England project manager, Tom Howard
Highways England project manager, Tom Howard

Clearly-signed diversions will be in place, and drivers who intend to travel on the A1 during the closures are being advised to check the latest traffic conditions before they set off.

The scheme is part of a £15 billion government investment in motorways and major A roads by 2021 which is being delivered by Highways England.

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