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'Crumbling' bridge which spans West Midlands Metro tracks to be removed

By Thomas Parkes | Wolverhampton | News | Published:

A "crumbling" Wolverhampton bridge which spans Metro tracks will be demolished after a £1 million cash boost was secured.

The footbridge, which was laid on top of the road bridge, seen from the Crescent Metro stop at Bilston

Wolverhampton Council bid for the government funds to take down the old brick bridge in Arthur Street, Bilston.

Plans to demolish the bridge had been put forward in 2018, with attempts at securing government funding last year falling through.

Routine inspections have revealed the bridge, which was overlaid with a more modern footbridge, posed a safety risk to the Metro running underneath.

Now the Department of Transport has provided funding for the work – including the refurbishment of the footbridge – to be carried out.

Councillor Steve Evans, Wolverhampton Council's cabinet member for city environment, said: "I welcome this funding which will enable us to remove an unsafe brick bridge and refurbish the modern footbridge.

Engineers

"Our routine inspections revealed that the old bridge is crumbling and is in desperate need of replacement before it jeopardises the West Midlands Metro tracks beneath it.

"The Metro is clearly of vital importance, transporting eight million passengers a year and connecting our city with the wider region.

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"Following the funding announcement, our engineers are now programming in this work and it will be done before the end of March 2021."

The Arthur Street bridge in Bilston was closed to vehicles in 1998 during work to lay down the Metro lines.

A footbridge was placed over it two years later, in 2000, and remains open today. But the old bridge, dating back to the late 1800s and visible from The Crescent Metro stop, still stands.

The old bridge structure will be removed and the newer footbridge that was placed over it will be refurbished, retaining the pedestrian access to Bilston.

Wolverhampton Council initially put in the funding bid last year – but was unsuccessful due to over-subscription but now the cash will be handed out by the Government as part of £100 million being shared across the country.

Thomas Parkes

By Thomas Parkes
Senior Reporter - @TParkes_Star

Senior reporter at the Express & Star, based in Wolverhampton. Got a story? Get in touch at thomas.parkes@expressandstar.co.uk.

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