Drivers reminded of overnight closures on A17 as bridge works continue
Details of overnight closures of the A17 have been reiterated by highways chiefs as the Cross Keys Swing Bridge works continue.
The £1.5 million project to paint and maintain the 1897 Sutton Bridge structure began in February and will continue through to the summer.
Bosses say the scheme is on course to be finished on time by July 1 – with residents and businesses being reminded of the upcoming night closures.
These are needed in May to allow the ends of the bridge to be painted – described as a ‘critical’ phase of the job.
The closures are on:
- May 3, 4 and 5
- May 9, 10 and 11
- May 16, 17 and 18
- May 23, 24 and 25
The bridge will be entirely closed to all traffic from 7pm to 7am on those dates – with the swing bridge needed to be held open for the work.
The diversion route during the closures is via the A17, A47, Lynn Road, A1101, A17 (and vice versa). This is also the current advisory route should road users want to avoid the queues at the Swing Bridge at any point during the remaining work schedule.
Bosses say that since work began, crews on site have discovered ‘seriously deteriorated sections’ of the structure’s protection and say they are ‘replacing and repairing the sections as part of the works that will mean a continued lifespan for the bridge’.
The temporary lights will be removed, however, on Monday to allow for Bank Holiday traffic to pass through.
Richard Fenwick, head of highways asset and local management services said: “We are delighted that the work on the bridge is running to schedule and is on course to be finished at the start of July, as planned.
“The planned series of overnight closures at the bridge are an essential part of the programme of works ongoing and by carrying out these works during the night, we’re hoping to seriously reduce the amount of disruption for road users in the area.
“We continue to be aware of local area disruption and traffic queues at times as a result of the temporary traffic lights and we are working closely with our traffic management operatives to keep disruption to the minimum where possible.
“We would like to thank local residents and road users for their understanding that this is a major set of works on a busy route and can’t be carried out in any other way. We appreciate that this is not ideal, but the scale and need for these repairs are vital for the continuation of the bridge into the future.
“As such, we are working extremely hard and at pace to complete these works before the summer holiday season begins.
“I would like to thank everyone effected by these works for their patience and the good will they have shown towards the traffic management operatives so far.”
Last year, senior county councillors mentioned that a £100 million-plus project will eventually be needed to replace the bridge, which is a vital link between Lincolnshire and Norfolk.