A13 project reaches major milestone with demolition of first bridge

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The A13 Road Widening Project in Thurrock has successfully completed its first bridge demolition, undertaking additional works, such as street lighting column removal and BT communication cable installation

To enable the demolition to take place safely, the A13 was closed in both directions from 9pm on Friday 30 August until 5am on Monday 2 September.

Saffron Gardens Bridge – which was previously used by farm vehicles – linked a major farm to the A1013 Stanford Road, either side of the A13. In advance of the demolition, an alternative access road was upgraded to allow the farm to continue to operate as normal throughout the entire duration of the project.

Kier used protective debris mats to protect the existing road surface underneath the bridge, with four demolition machines used to demolish the structure itself, as well as water cannons to control the spread of dust across the site and into public areas.

Live vibration monitoring was also in place to ensure that the demolition did not adversely affect the nearby gas pipeline.

A film has been produced, combining time-lapse, drone and close-up videography to show how works progressed over the weekend.

The A13 Road Widening Project involves widening the road between Orsett and Stanford-le-Hope, from two to three lanes and replacing four bridges.

At Saffron Gardens Farm the replacement bridge has been designed to accommodate larger agricultural machinery which is prevalent in modern farming, with the new bridge due to be installed in 2020.

Steve Mack, A13 project director at Kier, said: “Demolishing Saffron Gardens Bridge was a major milestone for our project and I would like to thank the team for their incredible efforts in planning and delivering this high-profile activity safely and successfully.”

Elsewhere across the project, the three other new bridges will be installed before the existing bridges are demolished to ensure that roads and communities remain connected at all times.

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