A bridge spanning one of the Midlands’ major roads is to be demolished in a single weekend.
The bridge, which originally carried the A522 above the A50 dual carriageway near Uttoxeter, has been replaced by a new bridge nearby as part of a multi-million project to deliver a safer, better junction for the two roads.
The new bridge is already in place and this demolition will be a major step towards completing the work on schedule to support the creation of new homes and more jobs, while cutting congestion and improving road safety.
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:
This is one of the final steps in a major project which will benefit the residents of Uttoxeter and improve one of the main road links across the Midlands.
To allow the work to be carried out as quickly and safely as possible, the A50 will be completely closed in both directions from 8pm on Friday, September 28 until 5.30am on Monday, October 1.”
The closure will be between the A521 roundabout at Blythe Bridge and the B5030 roundabout at Uttoxeter, where McDonald’s stands.
Advance notices will be put in place by Highways England on its wider A-road and motorway network, including the M1, M6 and A38, to encourage traffic to take alternative routes and signposted diversions will be in place, suitable for all vehicles including HGVs. As well as local media, national radio stations will also be told nearer the time so they can include the closure in travel bulletins.
The diversion route will be the same for vehicles travelling in both directions. From the east, traffic will be diverted northwards from the A50 at Uttoxeter on to the B5030 for a few hundred yards to the roundabout with the A518. Traffic will turn right there, cross back over the A50 along The Dove Way and continue on the A518 clockwise around Uttoxeter and follow the road towards Stafford. Vehicles will then follow the A51 and A34 towards Stoke-on-Trent, before joining the A500 and then the A50 to Blythe Bridge. The route is reversed from the west.
The Shell petrol station, which stands on the westbound carriageway a few hundred yards west of the B5030 roundabout, will open as normal and access will be maintained at all times via the A522, which will be completely open.
Mark Winnington said:
We have done as much of the preparatory work as possible in advance to reduce the amount of time the A50 needs to be closed, but the knock-on effect from the diversion will mean some local roads will be busier than usual that weekend.
I would like to thank everyone for their patience and understanding and suggest they allow extra time for your journeys.”
The demolition work consists of placing protective matting on the A50 carriageway to protect the surface from the machinery which will be breaking down the structure piece-by-piece from the top down. No explosives will be used.
Once the bridge deck has been dismantled and the rubble removed by lorry, the central support and side walls will also be pulled down. Water spray will be used whenever needed to keep dust under control and the site will be tidied and cleared to reopen on Monday morning.