The removal of the Spence Lane footbridge over the Armley Gyratory is to begin later this month, Leeds City Council highways chiefs have revealed today.
This is the first of three footbridges around the Gyratory which will be removed and replaced with new footbridges with more accessible footways, set to complete next year.
Built in the early 1970’s the 50-year-old footbridges, starting with Spence Lane, are to be removed and then replaced with a new footbridge to include accessible ramps to better meet the needs of non-motorised users and people with disabilities. All the new upgraded footbridges have been designed to ensure they will need less maintenance work and inspection, over future decades.
The 50-tonne bridge will be removed by one of the world’s most powerful all terrain cranes.
Motorists are advised there will be a weekend partial closure, starting 8pm on Friday 29 September, until 5.30am on Monday, 2 October. The approach to the Ingram Distributer (A643) will be closed and Wellington Road exit closed from the south, re-opening outside of these hours with lane restrictions. Future partial weekend closures are planned to complete the works – more details will be reported here.
For the Armley Gyratory footway for people walking or wheeling, there will be a diversion in place until spring 2024, while works take place on constructing the new bridges. Diversion plans for motorists and footway users can be found here.
The current phase two Armley structure programme:
- Spence Bridge (2a) Spring 2024 bridge construction completion.
- Geldard Bridge (2a) Spring 2024 – plans for removal and construction over single-weekend.
- Wellington Road Bridge (2b) removal and construction anticipated summer 2024
Watch video of the phase one resurfacing works below:
The Armley Gyratory highways phase one works are substantially complete, with some additional remedial surfacing and lining to take place shortly on partial night-time closures.
Already completed is the widening of the central gyratory and entry island approaches, which links to creating additional lane capacity. Also constructed is the carriageway pavement/widening build-up, vehicle restraint system and underground drainage. The next phase of works is to complete installation of new traffic signals, street lighting and progress landscaping which includes new trees.
The improvements are designed to increase capacity on the Leeds inner ring road and M621 and reduce city centre through-traffic, following the closure of City Square last year.
Councillor Helen Hayden, Leeds City Council’s executive member for sustainable development and infrastructure, said: “We’ve achieved a major milestone after completing resurfacing works on the Armley Gyratory, which already shows signs of accommodating more vehicles and improving traffic flow around the ring road.
“We’d like to thank everyone for their ongoing patience throughout the summer, whilst the road surfacing took place. I would also like to thank the project team and contractor for carrying out these complex works through some poor weather conditions during the summer holidays.
“The next phases of work represent transformative changes to the overhead footways for people walking and wheeling – making it easier to get across the gyratory, either going or away from the city centre. Again, we appreciate some patience while we continue to work hard to minimise disruption and thank those who have already changed the way they travel into and around the city centre. I look forward to seeing these new footway structures built and open by the summer next year.”