Transport for London TfL is progressing its Better Junctions and Cycle Superhighway proposals for the Broadway and Town Centre in conjunction with the Council’s Highways Department. There have been concerns raised over various issues including bus lanes in Beadon Road and further consultations are due to take place at the end of June.
The long term ambition for the Flyunder is still part of the Local Plan but needs further and more committed engagement by TfL.
Preparation is still in progress for the major repair works scheduled for Hammersmith Bridge next year : No dates for the repairs and related closure have been announced yet : The Hammersmith Society have asked to be consulted on the colours and lighting of the bridge.
The bridge acts as the visual icon of Hammersmith and the silhouette of one of the towers forms our own logo, for example.
Any of you that have travelled over the bridge over the last few months cannot have failed to notice the problems – either with the decking and surfacing of the carriageway or the queues of single decker buses being marshalled by TfL officials at each end. Discussions between the Council who are responsible for the days to day operation of the bridge and TfL who are responsible for the bus routes using the bridge have been on going for months. Ultimately TfL want to permanently strengthen the bridge to carry double decker buses but there are arguments about how to do this, how long it will take and who picks up the costs.
This bridge was built in 1870 and is Listed Grade 2*. It now carries 20,000 vehicles per day – far more than was ever envisaged. A 7.5tonne temporary weight limit and width restrictions are in place and currently only one single deck bus is allowed on the bridge at any one time. The two authorities now seem to agree that the earliest a scheme of permanent strengthening can commence will be in the second half of next year (2018). This will involve the closure of the bridge for many months. Visit the Council website
Work is still in preparation for the major repairs and strengthening of the bridge. The works are being sponsored by TfL but organised by engineers from our Council.
Tenders are being sought from specialist companies. The cost and time required and potential closures will depend on the responses. However, it is now likely that the works will not start before the late summer. Ian Hawthorn, the Council officer supervising the project, will keep us posted on the outcome of the tenders and the implications on programme and closures. He also confirms that the works will include the complete repainting of the bridge.
Time for a change of colour? I have mentioned this to you before but received no response . . . . !?
Despite recent emergency closures, the bridge is due to be completely closed next year for a more radical overhaul and strengthening to allow double decker buses to use it again. (They were banned when there were previous structural problems).
Our understanding is that this work is likely to take six months from next summer. The works will also involve repainting (and relighting). When it was last repainted, many lamented the loss of the more decorative treatment in pastel colours by the London County Council. The replacement in what many people refer to as Harrods green came about after studies of the original paint scheme by Sir Joseph Bazalgette in 1887 and was strongly advised by English Heritage. A new lighting scheme was also installed by the Council and which won a Hammersmith Society Environment Award in 2001, but the deck lighting has proved unreliable and difficult to maintain.
The Hammersmith Society Committee feel that there is an opportunity to revisit both the colour and the lighting and that an exciting way to explore possibilities would be for an open competition : We would be happy to organise this but obviously there would need to be agreement with both the Council and TfL who are funding the main project.