Garrion Bridge opens to traffic
A new road bridge offering a gateway to the Clyde Valley has opened to traffic.
The £6.6m Garrion Bridge Improvement Scheme in South Lanarkshire was built using £2.5m from the Scottish Office's Transport Challenge Fund. The Bridge and surrounding improvements are intended to ease congestion in the area and open up this important route further to tourists, commuters and commercial traffic.
Deputy Transport Minister Lewis Macdonald said:
"This new bridge and improvements to the road network will make a real difference to road users in the Clyde Valley. The A71 and A72 are vital links for the towns of Lanark and Biggar as well as the world-renowned New Lanark Heritage Village.
"The Garrion Bridge will also contribute to ensuring the economic viability of the Clyde Valley by easing the transport of goods and services to and from the area and also by ensuring the A72 and the A71 continue to be important tourist routes."
The Improvement Scheme has included:
- the building of a single-span reinforced arch bridge over the Clyde, 50 metres upstream of the existing Garrion Bridge (which was built in 1817)
- the construction of a new link road from the A72 Clyde Valley Road up to the A71 at the top of Cornsilloch Brae
- the construction of a new roundabout on the A71 at Cornsilloch Brae at its junction with the realigned A72
- the construction of a new single-span bridge over the Mill Burn to carry the realigned A72.
South Lanarkshire Council led the project with additional support from Scottish Enterprise Lanarkshire who contributed £200,000 and North Lanarkshire Council, who provided £100,000 of the total costs.
The Garrion Bridge Improvement Scheme was awarded £2.5m under the previous government's Transport Challenge Fund, the predecessor of the Scottish Executive's Public Transport Fund. This funding was in the form of section 94 borrowing consent and ended in 2000-01.
The A72 is the main route for the Western side of the Clyde Valley and links to the major towns of Biggar, Lanark and the New Lanark World Heritage Village.