Government awards £3.85 million towards project for Peterborough’s Rhubarb Bridge

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The Government has awarded £3.85 million towards a project for Peterborough’s Rhubarb Bridge.

The funding was awarded by the Department for Transport yesterday (Thursday, October 19) to the Cambridgeshire and Peterborough Combined Authority.

Rhubarb Bridge EMN-170815-173050009

Rhubarb Bridge EMN-170815-173050009

The bridge’s future has been the centre of intense debate with campaigners desperate for it to be repaired or replaced as it comes towards the end of its life.

Peterborough City Council has already awarded a £5.5 million contract to Skanska to replace Rhubarb Bridge with a scheme which will see a series of pedestrian crossings installed at Junction 18 of the A47/A15, with extra lanes also put in for motorists.

However, following a campaign against the scheme the ruling Conservative administration has now agreed to explore all options for the bridge, including whether it can be replaced, and has committed to seeking external funding.

The council has previously said any new bridge would cost between £20 million and £30 million - which would include the new crossings - but that it would need to spend £250,000 to get an exact costing.

A spokeswoman for the combined authority said a decision on how the £3.85 million will be spent will be decided by the authority’s board at a meeting on Wednesday (October 25).

A Peterborough City Council spokesman said: “We’re pleased that the combined authority’s Department for Transport funding bid for Junction 18 has been successful and we understand that it will now be part of discussions at their board meeting on Wednesday (October 25) alongside a number of other transport and infrastructure projects in the city.”

The Department for Transport (DfT) has also announced it will be spend £2.8 million to provide a right turn lane onto the B1095 from the A605 which runs between Peterborough and Whittlesey.

The government department’s funding is part of a £345.3 million package to improve local roads and public transport across the country.

A DfT spokeswoman said: “The schemes will provide much needed upgrades to key routes, cutting congestion, improving safety and shortening journey times for drivers.”

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