Andrew reports, "I have been seeking an update on the above works from National Highways and have now received the following information.
"The Highways team have explained that the works associated with The River Ouse is a haven for wildlife; the area includes a number of Special sites of Scientific Interest (SSSI) which they need to consider and protect from their activities while enabling works to progress on the bridge. They have worked alongside Natural England to ensure the works activities will not negatively impact on local wildlife and biodiversity along the riverbank. They add that this has heavily influenced their sequencing and preparatory works required to progress the construction works.
"They have explained that the works are now underway, excavating and preparing the foundations for the scaffold erection to the underside of each of the joints to be replaced, together with replacing and improving the drainage channels to the back of the hard shoulder on the east bound carriageway, integral to the performance of the new bridge joints.
"Up to the end of last week, they had removed approximately 1,150ft of covers and the fitting of new covers has also commenced incorporating any associated concrete and waterproof repairs to the drainage channels.
"They added that the works associated with the scaffold are complex as they must ensure the stability of the ground conditions, supporting the two 72ft high scaffold towers situated under the half joints of the bridge, are at no risk of any settlement before they can start to remove the existing joints.
"The foundations for the scaffold have been fully excavated and piezometers, to measure any settlement of the foundations, are also in place. The backfilling of the stone foundation pad to support the scaffold ground level and then the 3ft high pad of type 1 stone on top to pre-load for 4 weeks will be completed by the middle of this week. There is then a period of 4 weeks that they have to wait to monitor any settlement of the ground conditions before the actual erection of the scaffold can commence.
"They anticipate that the completion of the scaffold and the commencement of the works to replace the bridge joints to take place in April 2023. This will involve extensive concrete repairs and replacement to ‘house’ the new modular bridge joints design to respond to the expansion and contraction of the bridge.
"The establishment of the main compound is progressing where cabins are now in place and are ready to be serviced.
"They are programmed to have the eastbound half joint work complete by September when they will then be moving across to replace the westbound carriageway joints.
"They are still looking at completion of the whole of the works during winter 23/24.
"As ever, I will continue to seek updates for residents and will share them on here."