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Contractors World UK & Ireland Vol 6 No 1


half-million pound refurbishment.

The team will rely on a cofferdam for the river works,

enabling them to work below the waterline as the foun-

dations of the main central pylon are constructed in the


The new bridge, which will cross the River Wear be-

tween Wessington Way and European Way is the first

bridge to be built over the Wear for more than 40 years.

It is part of the wider strategic transport plan to link

the Port of Sunderland and city centre to the A19 and

the A1 and will attract new jobs and investment to the

Sunderland area.

Stephen McCaffrey, Project Director with FVB JV, the

partnership set up by Farrans and Victor Buyck Steel

Construction to deliver the project, said the arrival of

the ‘Claude Monique’ has marked a milestone in the


“During the past eight months, much of our work

has revolved around clearing the site on the

south side of the river and preparing the

embankments for the foundations to be laid to

support the approach roads to the bridge,”

he said.

“We have now reached a point where the in-river

work is starting, and the Claude Monique will

help us do that by providing us with a substantial

platform to work from.

“She is equipped with a lot of specialist

machinery to help us build the cofferdam and

get the central pylon foundations underway.”

Work on the bridge will press ahead in the coming

weeks and months, with the project scheduled for com-

pletion in Spring 2018.

The bridge, which will cross the River Wear between

Castletown on the North and Pallion on the South, will

have a steel A-frame pylon which rises to 105 m. It will

accommodate two lanes of traffic in both directions and

will also have dedicated cycleways and footpaths along

its full length, in line with revised planning permission

granted in August 2014.

The bridge construction will comprise piled founda-

tions, a reinforced concrete sub-structure and a steel

concrete composite bridge deck.

The two main cable-stayed spans are 148 m each

with a third fixed span of 40 m on the North side.

Temporary works will also be utilised to aid construction,

reduce the risk and impact of the works and reduce the

works programme.

These will include a cofferdam to the central pier,

temporary piled trestles to aid the bridge deck launch,

temporary piled anchor points to aid pylon erection and

a temporary launch platform.

Artistic renditions of the new road

bridge across the River Wear at


Contractors World UK & Ireland