UK Lift Bridge Schedules Repainting ‘Facelift’


The Lowry Bridge, also known as the Salford Quays Millennium Lift Bridge, in Greater Manchester, England, has been scheduled to be repainted and refurbished in hopes to “take it through the next quarter century.”

“Routine inspection work has shown that the bridge needs work to extend its lifespan and prevent more costly work in the future. National road and bridge guidelines say paintwork should be renewed every 20 years to protect the structure so the Lowry Bridge is due its facelift,” said Councilor Mike McCusker, lead member of planning for transport and sustainable development.

“It’s also an opportunity to repair lighting and the deck surface which is now rather worn after 23 years of heavy foot traffic. The bridge will remain fully open on match days and during major events but at other times we may need to narrow the footpath slightly during the day to keep the bridge safely in use.”

The white pedestrian bridge spans across the Manchester Ship Canal and was named after the artist L.S. Lowry, whose paintings depict his life in Salford with his iconic “matchstick men.”

Bridge Background, Refurbishment Plans

Originally constructed in 2000 at a cost of 6 million pounds ($7,514,820), the bridge has reportedly only had one round of minor, routine maintenance work since.

The structure was designed by Parkman Ltd. of Manchester, alongside architect and engineer Carlos Fernandez Casado, who designed the main span. Danish firm Christiani and Nielson served as the general contractors for the project.

The bridge spans 91 meters (299 feet) in length and is 13 meters in height above the deck. It can reportedly be raised or lowered 59 feet in under three minutes to allow large ships to pass beneath.

The span comprises a joined pair of bowstring arches that are 96 meters long, lifted by hydraulically driven winches and assisted by cast steel counterweights at each of the four corner towers. Colored glass wind deflectors along each edge of the bridge also protect pedestrians from wind.

The project is anticipated cost 777,480 pounds and include:

  • Minor repairs to the structure and lights;
  • Resurfacing the footway; and
  • Painting the span.

According to a Salford City Council press release, contractors will use scaffolding to spray paint the span and a cherry picker to paint the top of the bridge by hand. Additionally, the scaffolding will be covered to prevent paint or other debris dropping into the water below.

The job is expected to last a total of four months, during which time the bridge will not be raised for passing ships.

“The contract is also a great opportunity to get social value for Salford from our spend—something the council is strongly committed to. The contractors will employ local people, use local suppliers, many of which are small businesses and will donate materials and time to local community improvement projects, worth around 2,400 pounds,” said Councilor Jack Youd, lead member for finance.

The Manchester Evening News reports that scaffolding on the Lowry Bridge was expected to start this week.

The Salford City Council also noted that repairs and repainting work are planned for the nearby Palatine Bridge. Work is expected to start before the end of this month and will not affect road traffic.


Tagged categories: Bridges; Bridges; Coating Application; Coating Materials; Coatings; Contracts; EMEA (Europe, Middle East and Africa); EU; Historic Structures; Maintenance coating work; Maintenance programs; Program/Project Management; Rehabilitation/Repair; Scaffolding; Upcoming projects

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