A major £1million renovation scheme to strengthen one of Pontypridd’s oldest and busiest road bridges is about to begin.
The Victoria Bridge which crosses the River Taff next to Pontypridd’s iconic William Edwards Bridge will undergo an essential strengthening project to ensure the long-term stability of the 148-year-old structure.
Over the coming months an alternative traffic route and road closures will be put in place to assist with the earliest completion of works.
Victoria Bridge carries the A4223 over the river and is one of the main arterial routes that link Pontypridd and the Rhondda Valleys to the A470. It is also positioned next to a Scheduled Ancient Monument, which puts additional pressure on the team of contractors..
The work will involve the demolition of the existing edge cantilevers that support the footway. The girders that extend through the deck will be cut back and new steel sections inserted before a new bridge deck and parapet will be installed.
Rhondda Cynon Taf Council’s Cabinet Member for Frontline Services Cllr Andrew Morgan said, “The poor condition of this busy road bridge means that the strengthening project is of the utmost importance and warrants the spending of such a large capital sum.
“This is one of the busiest roads in the County Borough as it links Pontypridd and the Rhondda Valleys to the A470 and we realise the inconvenience the works will cause. However, we will endeavour to keep the disruption to a minimum in an effort to reduce the impact on motorists throughout the duration of works.
“We would like to thank residents and visitors to the area for their cooperation with us in the months ahead as this critical work is carried out.”
The funding is being made available by Rhondda Cynon Taf Council’s Highways Investment Project. The work is designed by the Council’s consultant Capita Property and Infrastructure and is being constructed by contractor Alun Griffiths Contractors (Wales).
A century after the iconic William Edwards Bridge opened on its third attempt, it was necessary to open a second bridge to accommodate the growing horse-drawn traffic in Pontypridd which had developed into a large market town for the South Wales Valleys.
Through public subscription the work began in 1856 to build a new three-arched bridge, named in honour of Queen Victoria. Further maintenance work on the bridge took place in 1959 with the widening of the carriageway.
To allow the scheme to progress over the scheduled 27 week period, a temporary one-way traffic system will be put in place from the junction of Bridge Street and Zion Street travelling west across to Pontypridd town centre.
The works will also require overnight closures of Victoria Bridge, which will take place as and when necessary between 7pm and 6am from May to November 2014.
There will also be some weekend closures from 7pm on Saturday evening to 6am on Monday morning.
Please be advised that pedestrian access will be maintained throughout the project and the emergency services have been consulted and agreed with the proposals.
Motor vehicles wishing to travel eastbound across the bridge from Pontypridd towards the A470 will be diverted along the Broadway towards Treforest and the Brown Lenox (Sainsburys) roundabout.
Any vehicles travelling along Gelliwastad Road and Morgan Road will be diverted into Taff Street and back along Crossbrook Street. The “no right turn” into lower Taff Street will be relaxed throughout the duration of the work.