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bridge demolition
The old A522 bridge over the A50 being demolished at the end of September 2018.

Bridge over the A50 demolished

A bridge which spanned the A50 for more than 30 years has been demolished in a single weekend.

Engineers worked round-the-clock from Friday evening until 3.15am on Oct 1 to remove the bridge which carried the A522 across the dual carriageway near Uttoxeter.

It is being replaced by a new bridge, with three new roundabouts, new slip roads and link roads to support business and unlock land for new housing and economic growth, while cutting congestion and improving road safety.

As well as demolishing the bridge, teams removed street lighting, safety fencing and carried out drainage works at the same time.

The project is being delivered by Staffordshire County Council, on behalf of Highways England.

Mark Winnington, Staffordshire County Council’s Cabinet member for Economic Growth, said:

“A lot of preparation went into this so that a major piece of work could be carried out in one weekend and it’s a credit to the team that the work has run to schedule

“A lot of planning went into doing this as quickly as possible to minimise the inconvenience as much as possible and we are grateful for residents’ patience and understanding.

“The project is almost finished now and when it is it will bring economic benefits for Uttoxeter, as well as improving the main road link between the West and East Midlands.”

During the weekend engineers flattened the 25ft high bridge by using machinery to break it up from the top down. All material from the bridge will be recycled.

Once the bridge deck was dismantled and the rubble removed, the central support and side walls were also pulled down, with water sprayed when necessary to control dust levels.

Teams will need to return to remove the very last part of one final bridge support, and are already in the process of working out how this can be done with minimal disruption.

Protective matting was removed from the A50 carriageway before the road was reopened between the A521 roundabout at Blythe Bridge and the B5030 roundabout at Uttoxeter.

The next phase of work begins on Monday, 8 October, when A522 New Road will be closed to vehicles from the Shell garage entrance for approximately 400 yards west towards Tunnicliffe Way. This is to reconstruct the carriageway, install ducts and pipes for future power, broadband and energy supply needs in the area for housing and industry.

The A522 will reopen in early December, with the Project A worked planned to finish on Friday, 14 December and again diversions will be in place similar to the earlier closure of the A522. More details can be found here or by going to www.staffordshire.gov.uk and searching for ‘A50’.