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Published on : Thursday, March 3, 2016
Residents in Royal Wootton Bassett are reminded that Marlborough Road/Broad Town bridge will be temporarily closed from Sunday 6 March to enable Network Rail to carry out work in preparation for the arrival of a new fleet of electric trains.
Network Rail’s orange army will be reconstructing the bridge as part of the company’s £40bn Railway Upgrade Plan to provide a bigger, better, more reliable railway for passengers. The reconstruction will involve raising the height of the bridge to create the necessary room for the overhead wires that will power the new fleet of longer, faster, quieter and greener electric trains to run underneath.
To minimise disruption to the local community while this improvement work takes place, the orange army has built a temporary link road, to ensure residents don’t have to use a lengthy diversion route. A temporary footbridge is also being installed so that cyclists and pedestrians can continue to use the bridge throughout.
Over recent weeks the team has been working hard to complete the road and ensure it is ready for use when the bridge closes at 5pm on Sunday. The final stages of the work have included adding in road markings and installing safety barriers, fencing and speed limit signs.
Andy Haynes, Network Rail’s project director for the west of England, said: “The improvements we are carrying out in Royal Wootton Bassett are extensive but essential to bring our railway into the 21st century and improve the experience for passengers. It was very important to us in planning this work to minimise disruption as much as possible, which is why we built the temporary road and are constructing the footbridge.
“I’d like to thank residents in advance for their patience and understanding while we complete these essential improvements that will pave the way for electrification and the benefits this will bring. These benefits include faster trains with more seats and more leg room, and less noise and cleaner air for those who live close to the railway.”
Once the reconstruction of Marlborough Road/Broad Town bridge is complete, the team will begin the reconstruction of the nearby A3102 Bath Road bridge and the track lowering work underneath the listed Hunts Mill bridge. Throughout this time the link road will remain open for residents to use. It is expected that the work on all three bridges will be complete by spring 2017.