The first major maintenance work on the famous bridge in more than 20 years began on Monday morning.
Engineers are beginning the project by erecting scaffolding around the tower on the Gateshead side of the river, which is expected to take three months.
Read more: Newcastle: Tyne Bridge cost rises £12m
The extensive rehabilitation project could take up to four years in total and it is hoped that the work will be completed before the Tyne Bridge’s centenary in 2028.
Motorists have been warned to prepare for serious disruption from early next year, when the bulk of the renovation work begins and the bridge’s freeway must be reduced from four lanes to just two.
The start of repairs to the listed Icon II* represents a significant milestone after a long wait for work to begin.
The rusting and increasingly dilapidated state of the Tyne Bridge has been high on the agenda of area officials for some time – not only because of the peeling paintwork and shabby appearance, but also because of the structural safety of a crossing that handles up to 70,000 vehicles a day is being used .
After years of campaigning, the government finally agreed to fund most of the work in the summer of 2022.
Since then, however, there have been further concerns. Inflation rates and the fact that the bridge was in even worse condition than initially thought have contributed to the cost of the renewal increasing by an estimated £12m to a total of £32.6m.
In addition to a complete repaint of the rusting bridge, contractor company Esh will be tasked with a range of major structural repairs – including steel and concrete repairs, drainage improvements, masonry and masonry repairs, waterproofing and resurfacing, parapet protection and replacement of bridge joints.
It is the first time since 2001 that the Tyne Bridge has undergone major maintenance.
The first phase of the fall and winter work will completely cover the steel structures adjacent to Gateshead Tower and above the Bar By the River Brew Co.
Gateshead Council Leader Martin Gannon said last week: “The Tyne Bridge is an important landmark for the whole of the North East and we want this iconic structure to be restored to the standard we all expect.”
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“We will need everyone in the region to love the bridge and do their part to help us minimize the disruption that the restoration will bring to the transport network.
“It will be a proud day when our Tyne Bridge is restored to its former glory and ready for its centenary.”
Newcastle and Gateshead City Councils said last Thursday they would announce some corrective measures “later in the autumn” to deal with expected traffic chaos resulting from the lane closures on the bridge next year.
https://www.thenorthernecho.co.uk/news/23781407.newcastle-gateshead-works-restore-tyne-bridge-begin/?ref=rss Newcastle/Gateshead: Work to restore the Tyne Bridge begins