News - Construction News

Oldbury Viaduct enters next phase

Work at the M5 Oldbury Viaduct is continuing, with contractors gearing up for the next phase of the mammoth project.

As work on the southbound carriageway nears completion, traffic is set to switch lanes to the northbound carriageway in September, allowing teams to complete the repairs to this important structure. The switching process will last around a week and to minimise disruption will take place gradually overnight to ensure traffic flows during the day.

The mammoth project has involved concrete repairs and waterproofing along a two-mile section of the viaduct, and at a cost of more than £100M, is believed to be the largest concrete repair project carried out in Britain. And with over 400 hundred miles of scaffolding erected, using enough scaffold boards to cover seven football pitches and enough scaffold staircases to reach the top of Ben Nevis and Snowdon, is also the largest scaffolding project undertaken.

Much of the work takes place underneath the viaduct and so the workforce, averaging around 500 people, cannot always be seen by the travelling public.

Highways England Head of Service Delivery, Andrew Butterfield, said: “We’re fast approaching completion of work on the southbound carriageway.

“I appreciate it’s not been straightforward getting here. We were only able to fully assess the condition of the southbound carriageway once the work had started and found around 6,000 individual repairs were needed, which is 4,500 more than anticipated. To add to the challenges, we had one of the harshest winters, followed by warmest summers in years.

“As a result, work on this section has taken longer than expected, but we’re committing every resource available to get this work done as safely and quickly as possible.

“We understand the level of disruption this project involves, and we’d like to thank motorists, businesses and residents for their patience.”

If you would like to read more articles like this then please click here.