The City of London Corporation’s essential maintenance and waterproofing programme for London Bridge has completed almost four weeks ahead of schedule.
The work saw the removal and replacement of the existing surfacing on the carriageway and footways, the repair of the concrete surface to achieve the appropriate exterior for waterproofing followed by the replacement of 24 of the original bearings at the north and south end of the bridge.
Since mid-March, London Bridge was shut to all traffic except buses, licensed taxis, cyclists and pedestrians, with all other road users diverted to nearby bridges.
The maintenance was able to continue throughout the national COVID-19 lockdown, with engineers keeping safe by following strict additional safety measures and adapting to new ways of working, said the Corporation.
William Russell, Lord Mayor of the City of London, said: “This vital work has ensured London Bridge remains operational for years to come. It goes without saying that to complete extensive maintenance ahead of schedule is a fantastic result, but to do so during a global pandemic is exceptional.
“Our greatest thanks to contractors FM Conway who showed the utmost flexibility and dedication, as well as to all local businesses and residents who were patient and supportive of the maintenance programme. It is a true feat to have completed such technical and demanding works to this structure under radical new ways of working, including the need to remain socially distant from all others on site.”
Matt Smith, FM Conway Structures Director, said: “We are delighted to have completed the works ahead of schedule especially during one of the greatest challenges we have all faced in recent history.
“London Bridge is a prestigious and busy crossing and although the bridge remained closed to most traffic, our teams worked hard to ensure that works continued whilst access remained open to approved road users and pedestrians. Our unique self-delivery model really came to fruition at this time as our structures, surfacing and traffic management teams all supported with the successful cohesive delivery.
As part of the London Streetspace Programme, Transport for London (TfL) have now created a cycling, walking and bus-only corridor over London Bridge.