Revised plans for new footbridge in Sidmouth

Alma BridgeAlma Bridge

Posted on: 11 September 2017

Plans for a new footbridge over the River Sid in Sidmouth are continuing to be developed by Devon County Council.

Following initial consultations with Sidmouth Town Council earlier this year, giving approval for the proposed new Alma Bridge over the River Sid in the vicinity of the Ham recreational ground, the plans have been refined by the County Council following detailed investigations and consultations with South West Water.

Devon County Council has been working on plans to replace Alma Bridge with a steel structure further inland. It has been discussing the plans with stakeholders over the past few months, including Sidmouth Town Council, South West Water, the Environment Agency and East Devon District Council.

The original designs proposed a new ramp and steps on the Ham recreational ground which would have crossed over the top of the South West Water sewer pipes connecting into the pumping station and storage tank. This would have involved some diversionary works to the pipes to accommodate the new bridge foundations.

The scheme has now been updated and the bridge location has been moved slightly further downstream to avoid South West Water underground infrastructure. Although around 10 metres closer to the sea, it would still be 40 metres upstream of the existing Alma Bridge. The revised plans for the new footbridge will reduce disruption to the Ham recreational ground during construction.

Councillor Stuart Hughes

Councillor Stuart Hughes, Devon County Council Cabinet Member with responsibility for bridges and local County Councillor for Sidmouth, said: “The plans have been refined to ensure the bridge avoids the need to divert the sewer pipes, which will reduce disruption to the Ham. Although the bridge will be slightly closer to the sea than the previous proposal, it would still have a good lifespan at this location and the bridge, ramps and steps are a better fit with the surrounding infrastructure.”

The amended designs have received the support of Sidmouth Town Council. The Town Council also agreed that the County Council can undertake site investigation work, which would require the closure of the river walkway for several days.

Subject to budgets, it is hoped that construction of the bridge could start later next year.

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Posted in: Environment