New Sidmouth bridge still on course for spring completion – despite storms setback

A new Sidmouth footbridge is still expected to open in the spring – despite the town taking a battering from recent storms.

Devon County Council (DCC) says work is ‘progressing well’ on the Alma Bridge replacement and cliff re-profiling and stabilisation efforts have been completed.

Piled foundations and columns for the structure spanning the River Sid and a river training wall have also been finished by contractor MacPlant Construction Ltd.

Contractors are n course to complete the Sidmouth bridge in the spring. Picture: DCC

Contractors are n course to complete the Sidmouth bridge in the spring. Picture: DCC

Storms Ciara and Dennis have caused delays, according to the authority.

The latter combined with high river levels and spring tides to cause a temporary cofferdam to overtop. It meant the contractor had to stand down until conditions improved.

DCC says a temporary bridge across the River Sid being used by MacPlant has helped minimise delays.

The council added that a spring completion can still be achieved ‘subject to further weather events’.

An artist's impressions of the proposed new Alma Bridge in Sidmouth. Image: Devon County Council

An artist’s impressions of the proposed new Alma Bridge in Sidmouth. Image: Devon County Council

An artist's impressions of the proposed new Alma Bridge in Sidmouth. Image: Devon County Council

An artist’s impressions of the proposed new Alma Bridge in Sidmouth. Image: Devon County Council

Councillor Stuart Hughes, Sidmouth representative and DCC cabinet member with responsibility for bridges, said: “The contractor has faced some really challenging conditions with the recent storms, but they have managed extremely well.

“ Although the weather means there are never any guarantees, we’re still anticipating the project can be completed in the spring.”

An artist's impressions of the proposed new Alma Bridge in Sidmouth. Image: Devon County Council

An artist’s impressions of the proposed new Alma Bridge in Sidmouth. Image: Devon County Council

Work is now well under way on the construction of the concrete bridge abutment and its masonry facing.

The steelwork for the bridge and ramps is being prepared off-site and is due to be delivered at the end of March.

When these have been installed, the contractor will move its compound from The Ham to a temporary base on The Esplanade.

Once the new bridge is open to the public, work will then progress with the demolition of the existing Alma Bridge.

More information on the scheme can be found here.

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