SkyscraperCity banner

1 - 20 of 611 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
545 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
A forth road bridge replacement has won backing from the transport minister and the first minister. I felt that this deserves it's own thread as it will obviously be a huge project.

Bridge replacement wins backing

A new road crossing over the Firth of Forth has been backed by the first minister and the transport minister.

Although the final report into the state of the bridge is due next summer, Transport Minister Tavish Scott has been briefed on preliminary findings.

The study was ordered amid continuing concern about the level of corrosion in cables on the current bridge.

A Scottish Executive spokesman said: "These findings indicated a replacement crossing is required."

The spokesman added: "The first minister has therefore asked for a report to be brought to cabinet.

"This report will cover the new information on options for a replacement crossing, an up-to-date technical assessment on the existing Forth Road Bridge and the further work on financing a replacement crossing."

Reduce congestion

Green MSP Mark Ballard condemned the executive's backing for the crossing.

"The executive has shown astonishing recklessness," he said.

"Having previously said it would wait until all the research it commissioned had been completed, ministers now appear to have jumped the gun and given the go-ahead for a second bridge.

"Waiting for the final results of the studies would have allowed for informed debate and a decision based on facts, not electioneering."

A Friends of the Earth spokesman said: "If the executive has to replace the bridge then we find that acceptable.

"However, if it results in increased road capacity then it is unacceptable and will undermine all the executive's commitment to stabilising road traffic levels and reducing emissions."

Bruce Crawford, mid-Scotland and Fife SNP MSP, said: "Construction must be ready to start so we can remove any risk of a period of closure, with the devastating effect that would have on the economy of Scotland and in particular the economy of the east coast and north of our country.

"The Forth Road Bridge is an essential artery for transport throughout east and central Scotland.

"Closing or restricting this route would impact on each and every alternative North-South route and create substantial difficulties, not only for businesses based on either side of the Forth but many major businesses in Scotland. That is unacceptable.

"This is the right decision for Fife and for all of Scotland."

Tunnel option

Louise Batchelor, BBC Scotland's transport correspondent, said the new crossing might not be a bridge and may also be used by trams.

She said: "The Scottish Executive hasn't got down to the detailed plans. There still could be a tunnel, for example, so for the time being it is a crossing, which also may or may not be just for cars."

In November last year a full independent assessment of the state of cables on the Forth Road Bridge was commissioned after initial inspections by the Forth Estuary Transport Authority (Feta) found some corroded cables on the bridge.

It said that unless action was taken the 42-year-old bridge could close to heavy goods vehicles by 2013.

Campaigners have said a new road crossing would help reduce congestion and stimulate the local economy.
http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/scotland/edinburgh_and_east/6190041.stm
 

·
Moderator
Joined
·
5,741 Posts
Yep, no way they'll build a tunnel - waaaaaaaaay too expensive.

I'll be sad to see the old blighter be replaced if they deem it beyond repair next year (quite likely by the look of the bracing they've bolted onto the South tower...). A replacement is drastically needed, though. The bridge takes a daily pummeling 20x that of what it was designed for, and with just 4 lanes, it simply cannot hold enough traffic.


These are a few news paper clippings that I saved from http://www.forthbridges.org.uk/ showing the planned new bridge. They are 2 years old now, though, so it probably won't look like this anymore...








The new bridge is 300m shorter (huge main span - 6th longest in the world), but is much taller at 185m. It'll cost an absolute FORTUNE to build though...



I like the present one, but can you imagine the sight of THREE of the UK's largest bridges standing side by side?! It'll look unbelievable!



A couple of shots what I took of the current bridge, and a few taken by other people that I found lying around my photobucket account. At home for Xmas so I don't have my PC to upload any other decent ones, so these will have to do :)









 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,566 Posts
whoa! that final one is a total belter. I'm crapping myself just thinking about it.

It may cost a fortune to build a new one but this is one bit of East Coast investment that I'd be happy to vote for. Three enormo-bridges side by side is going to be fantastic. I like the elegant sweep of the suspension bridges juxtaposed with the victorian glory of the rail bridge.
 

·
smalltown boy
Joined
·
3,433 Posts
Although I would normally be against such large investments in roads, if the existing bridge is really suffering such large problems, then there really can't be any debate about whether it should be replaced. It would be economically disastrous for Edinburgh, Fife, Dundee and most of the north of Scotland if it was to close - it is part of one of the main arterial routes north.

Apparently most of the parties are going to go into the next election with a pledge to remove tolls from the bridge in a desperate attempt to win votes in Fife. This, however, is pretty unpardonable and short termist folly.

Although I can't quite work out why, apparently a tunnel might well be cheaper.
 

·
Profile of the Rising Sun
Joined
·
2,849 Posts
I hope they don't build a tunnel. It just wouldn't be the same as a bridge.
Money is everything (as it would be cheaper) and it is nice to have three beautiful structures next to each other - even if it will cost the equivelant of a few baby incubators and a well in Africa.

Not to build a bridge would be a drastic mistake.
 

·
Profile of the Rising Sun
Joined
·
2,849 Posts
Looks like it is between a tunnel and a bridge now (what others options were there?). I could see it being a tunnel as it supposedly lasts longer and costs less.

I would prefer a bridge, though. Something nice to look at.
Would people rather have the Forth Rail Tunnel because it costs less to run? I could see half the people of today saying yes. :(
 

·
smalltown boy
Joined
·
3,433 Posts
Other options were: road-rail crossing, a tidal barrage, swing bridge, ferry, Leith-Burntisland bridge, and adding extra lanes to the Forth Road Bridge.

Some of those can't have been particularly hard to rule out!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
410 Posts
More investment in the east, while Glasgow suffers as the M74 saga rolls on and on and.........
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
10,862 Posts
Yep, new Forth bridge is VITAL to the nation while the M74 extension ( which will carry at least twice as much traffic as a new Forth bridge ) is a sorepoint. Of course there needs to be a Forth crossing between Fife and Edinburgh though. I've always though it would be pretty cool to close the inner ring road using a nifty looking suspension bridge - say from Townhead connecting with the new M74 level with the Dixons Blazes industrial estate.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,566 Posts
Can anybody clarify if they plan to keep the existing bridge open whenever the new crossing opens? From what I've read in the papers this week it sounds like the current bridge is pretty much gubbed and that corrosion is so bad they will have to close it to HGV's by 2013. Does that mean at some unspecified date in the future it will be unfit to carry any traffic or will the reduced traffic once crossing no.2 is open prolong its life?

Second point. How well has the Forth Road Bridge endured in comparison with other suspension bridges? I appreciate these things can't go on indefinitely but a 50-55 year useful lifespan is a bit pish, is it not? How old is the Golden Gate? Verrazano Narrows in NY? I thought they were both older. Does it mean that the Humber Bridge will be badgered in 20 years time?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
80 Posts
speaking to someone who is relatively close to this at Transport Scotland I think this is more likely to be a tunnel rather than a bridge. Going to cost a fortune either way.
 

·
Moderator
Joined
·
5,741 Posts
To be quite honest, I think a tunnel is a terrible idea - there is so much more that can go wrong with tunnels, and I'll eat my hat if it turns out to be cheaper than building a bridge.


The BBC said the other night that £1 billion was going to be needed for the crossing - does this sound about right, or did I mishear what that money was for.


In regards to importance, the Forth Road Bridge is much, much more important than the M74 extension - the M74 isn't complete just now and the city gets by.

If we don't get a new crossing before the existing Forth Road Bridge packs it in, half of the country is totally fucked.

The two aren't even comparable at all.
 

·
MORI
Joined
·
8,646 Posts
3Bn, wow!! ...and to be completed by 2013.

Herald

New Forth crossing could cost £3bn

A new Forth crossing could cost up to £3bn, it emerged yesterday, after ministers gave approval in principle to a project which supporting documents say is likely to be tolled and privately financed.

The cheapest option, a bridge alongside the current road crossing, would cost at least £1bn at current prices, while a tunnel under one of the longer corridors would cost three times that
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
10,862 Posts
Holy shit! £3bn! Is there nothing they can do to fix the existing bridge for under £3bn! So thats all the transport spending in Scotland swallowed up for the next twenty years?
 

·
Izzle Bizzle
Joined
·
1,511 Posts
I was trying hard to understand the people that were syaing the tunnel might cost less than the bridge, but just couldn't see it myself. These numbers confirm my suspicions.

Tunnelling will almost always cost more than bridging. I think this essentially boils down to the fact that, metre for metre, steel is cheaper than tunnelling.

Obivously, it's vastly more complicated than that, but you know... trying to understand things in simple terms (the only way I get by in life!) is sometimes useful.
 

·
smalltown boy
Joined
·
3,433 Posts
Second point. How well has the Forth Road Bridge endured in comparison with other suspension bridges? I appreciate these things can't go on indefinitely but a 50-55 year useful lifespan is a bit pish, is it not? How old is the Golden Gate? Verrazano Narrows in NY? I thought they were both older. Does it mean that the Humber Bridge will be badgered in 20 years time?
Golden Gate is being completely rebuilt at the moment, so that eventually, not a single piece of steel on it will be original. This is to protect it from earthquakes though (no idea if it has suffered major corrosion). Don't know the costs off the top of my head, but it apparently much more expensive than a new build, but it is such an iconic structure.
 

·
Moderator
Joined
·
5,741 Posts
Rubbish.

I refuse to believe that a tunnel is cheaper to build. And there is NO WAY that 1.5+ miles of sea-bed tunneling would only cost £3.25million to maintain for 20 years. Christ, it's costing more than that to maintain the Clyde Tunnel, not to mention a mamoth (and hugely tidal) sea crossing.

Simply put, these figures sound crazy.

Until concrete evidence is put right in front of me, I still say that a bridge is the only viable option.
 
1 - 20 of 611 Posts
Top