Garden Bridge construction timetable outlined

Planting work on the Garden Bridge is due to begin in late 2017, and the bridge will open in June 2018, according to the charity behind the plans.

Construction timeline. Image: Garden Bridge Trust
Construction timeline. Image: Garden Bridge Trust

The Garden Bridge Trust is promising the bridge will be built within 1000 days, despite not knowing the outcome of a judicial review into whether the bridge can be built. The review will be heard on 10 and 11 June.

Bridge builders Bouygues TP and Cimolai were selected earlier this month as preferred bidders in a joint venture. They are currently identifying key design priorities and methods, to be submitted to bridge engineers and lead consultants Arup in June.

According to the timetable, full design and construction plans will be submitted to Garden Bridge Trust for approval in August. The construction contract will be formally awarded in September, signalling the start of preparation of the site, intensive surveying, and the building of work compounds.

Initial ground investigation boreholes in the Thames began in April, but intensive work will not start on site until the first quarter of 2016. Two worksites will be established - one each on the North and South Bank - in January 2016, but there will be limited construction work on South bank until September 2016.

The installation of working platforms to construct cofferdams for the two bridge piers will begin from February 2016, with the first piles sunk into the river bed during that summer. Work to build the landing stage on the South Bank will start in late 2016, alongside construction of the north and south bridge piers.

The main structure will be fabricated in sections in Cimolai’s manufacturing facility in Italy. Bridge sections will be transported by sea to the UK as large structures, staged at Tilbury for partial assembly, and then brought by barge along the Thames to the Garden Bridge site to be lifted into place.

The main bridge structure will be installed in four large sections, lifted into place between May and October 2017, with planting due to start shortly afterwards.

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