Saturday, August 27, 2011

A Bridge too far..............

A bridge too far........................

As a Cycle Demonstration Town,Darlington cycle users can have a hard time.We have cycle lanes,cycle routes,a cycle hire scheme and obstacles.It is the obstacles that give us the hard time.One of these obstacles is a railway bridge on the Haughton Road.It is on an arterial cycle route connecting the town centre to the Eastern Transport Corridor.The railway bridge is also on the main route to Darlington College and the newly opened College and sees a lot of traffic,vehicular,pedestrian and cyclists.
Approaching the bridge,on either side,is a cycle path.Clearly sign posted at the end/start of the cycle paths are "cyclists dismount" signs and "end of cycle route" signs.This does not prevent some cyclists using the footpaths over the bridge or using the road as shown in this short video clip.
 

8 comments:

Darlington Sustrans Rangers said...

Not for long (we live in hope):-

http://darlington-sustran-rangers.blogspot.com/search?updated-max=2011-02-10T22%3A26%3A00-08%3A00&max-results=7

duncan said...

"not for long(we live in hope)"
The pedestrian/cycle bridge should have been in place whenthe college opened in 2008,certainly the Local Motion maps showed that it would be in place "may 2008".How long is "not for long"?.
Given the amount of money available for cycling infrastructure that Darlington Borough Council has spent,it should be an awful lot better,safer and easier to cycle in this town.

Brian Vigurs said...

There are several issues that need to be taken “On Board” concerning the delay in this bridge installation. The cycle/ footbridge will be largest fibre reinforced plastic footbridge for use on the rail network in the UK making it Unique.
At the planning stage Network Rail had to approve the design of the structure to be resistant to vandalism and fire. Also another aspect of the design needing further research was the effect on the bridge due to passing trains at speed underneath it.
All this occurred late in 2007 and the bridge was taken to be OK for construction mid 2008 as long as the two main problems listed above were solved. I believe that not all were sorted by this time and construction was delayed.
Then another problem occurred, the company undertaking the construction folded with all its legal complications. Whether or not partial construction had occurred I do not know but suspect that it did as a spokesperson from the council made this comment in 2009:-
“Some initial construction work has been undertaken on the bridge, with an innovative design that uses a fibre reinforced polymer to ease its placement over the busy railway line, and the council is in continuing discussion with all relevant parties to ensure its successful completion. The contractor advises that a start on site is expected in 2010.”

duncan said...

Thank you for your comment Brian.
Sadly 2010 has been and gone.

miketually said...

In 2010, I was told that the bridge was finished and sat in a construction yard ready to be fitted.

Every spring for the last five(?) years, the bridge has been due to be installed "this summer". At some point in the year, it becomes "next summer".

Anonymous said...

Coming from town, using the cycle path on the side of the road where the college is, there are no signs telling cyclists to dismount at the bridge.

miketually said...

"Coming from town, using the cycle path on the side of the road where the college is, there are no signs telling cyclists to dismount at the bridge."

There were. I wonder if they've been nicked?

Richard Grassick said...

Funny. There it is in Duncan's video, but if you go to google street view, there's no sign - just a cyclist continuing on up to the bridge lol!