Funding has been secured to repair the Jubilee Bridge at the north end of Inverbervie.
Residents have been concerned about the structural stability of the bridge for several years. Some have reported that the structure would shake when heavy loads were crossing.
A safety barrier was erected along the bridge to allay fears but has done little to address the underlying structural problems.
£260,000 in total has been secured for the repair works, with £180,000 going towards “parapet works and design of refurbishment” and the remaining £80,000 being spent on “weight in motion monitor installation”.
Cllr Leigh Wilson of the Mearns ward has been highlighting the problem since his election in May of 2017.
He commented: “It has been clear for some time that the bridge needs work done to keep it up to a serviceable standard. I am glad that this funding has now been agreed so we can progress with creating a second parapet.
“I have asked for long-term plans regarding a possible new bridge but carrying out this remedial work should extend the life of the bridge by around 25 years and in the future, with the opening of the AWPR and the Laurencekirk flyover, the local road network will be more able to absorb disruption from such a large project.
“The remedial work proposed is the most sensible decision to take at the current time. This is an important investment in the Royal Burgh.”
Construction began on the current Jubilee bridge in 1933, and when completed in 1935 was named in honour of the 25th reigning year of King George V. The bridge was last refurbished in 2008 for a 40 week period.
Donald MacPherson, Aberdeenshire Council’s bridges and structures manager discussed the three phases of work that would take place:
“The first is the installation of a Weigh in Motion System that will be able to measure the weights of vehicles using the bridge to determine if overloading is occurring and at what frequency,
“The second element is to put in additional measures to restrain errant vehicles over and above the containment provided by the existing parapets.
“The third is to commence the feasibility design for major refurbishment of the bridge, with works in future years.”
A list of bridge repair works was agreed at the latest Kincardine and Mearns Area Committee meeting held on Tuesday. The list can be found here.
Other structures which will have repair works conducted include the Fettercairn Royal Arch (£12,000) and the Abbeyton Rail Bridge (£145,000).
The refurbishment is expected to commence in the coming months.