Awarded via the SCAPE Scotland Civil Engineering framework, Scottish Canals appointed Balfour Beatty to construct a new 3.5m wide bridge. The bridge comprising of two single span decks suspended on a network of cables is connected to a single inclined pylon situated on the east bank of the canal.
The new curved footbridge allows pedestrians and cyclists to cross the canal at towpath level rather than having to negotiate the footways below the existing aqueduct.
The new bridge also offers an integrated observation deck and landscaping to provide exposure to the canal's waterfront and green spaces. To help increase canal usage, we developed new public recreational places featuring art installations.
A key challenge of the project was to keep the waterways as accessible as possible to all canal users, whether they were using the towpath or the actual canal. Our teams collaborated with the local Rotary Club on a regular basis to ensure that disruption was minimised, and canal users were well informed in advance of any work taking place. This aided in keeping the local community informed and fostering positive working relationships with all key parties.
For the first time since the waterway opened in 1790, the new bridge connects the city's villages of Maryhill, Gilshochill, and Ruchill. It will also serve as the final link in the canal towpath, finishing National Cycle Network Route 754, connecting Glasgow and Edinburgh through the Falkirk Wheel.
The construction of the Stockingfield foot and cycle bridge will significantly encourage physical activities such as cycling, walking and jogging along the Forth & Clyde Canal whilst opening routes to the city's west end leisure facilities and employment prospects for local people.
Michael Matheson, Cabinet Secretary for Transport, Infrastructure and Connectivity echoed his enthusiasm and shared his thoughts, “this new bridge will offer people living and visiting North Glasgow better walking, wheeling and cycling connectivity than before. The Stockingfield Bridge will make it even easier for the communities of Maryhill, Ruchill and Gilshochill to get around locally in a sustainable way, as well as accessing the fantastic nature reserve at Possil Marsh. At the same time, it completes a missing link in the National Cycle Network Route 754, which offers a traffic-free route between Glasgow and Edinburgh via the spectacular Falkirk Wheel.”