A NEW steel bridge has been built at Altrincham Interchange, signalling a major milestone in the creation of the new modern transport hub.
The work is part of a £19 million redevelopment of the interchange – due to be completed in 2014.
The 45-tonne steel structure, which will have glazed sides and metal roof, was lifted from the Oakfield Road Car Park (by international construction and engineering specialists Laing O’Rourke).
A 750-tonne mobile crane was used to lift the two preformed segments of the bridge into place, (in the early hours of April 13).
The first segment was 16m-long and weighed 25 tonnes, while the second was 11.5m-long and weighed 20 tonnes.
The two segments were then joined together at the central platform support structure.
Work was carried out overnight to minimise disruption to commuters.
The bridge will cross both the Network Rail and Metrolink lines, improving passenger access to four platforms via stairs and lifts.
Transport for Greater Manchester’s head of programme management services, Peter Boulton, said: “The construction of the bridge is excellent news as it is a very visual element of the scheme and passengers will now be able to really see the new, modern interchange taking shape.
“The bridge will improve passenger access to all four platforms, through new stairs and lifts, which is a key motivation behind the whole project.
“When complete, the new multi-modal interchange will improve facilities for passengers and the integration of transport modes whilst simultaneously being sympathetic to the heritage of the original facility.”
Transport bosses say the revamp of the interchange will also offer an impressive new gateway for visitors arriving in Altrincham, and will play a key role in shaping the vision for the town centre being driven by Trafford Council.
The existing interchange will be transformed into a new, fully accessible facility with a modern concourse, a single, integrated ticket office and improved links between bus, train and tram services.
As part of the Greater Manchester Commuter Cycling Project, which is being funded through the government’s Local Sustainable Transport Fund, new cycling facilities will also be provided.