The next chapter for Metrolink will begin in Oldham this weekend when the remaining half of the viaduct at Oldham Mumps is removed to make way for the new tram line to Oldham and Rochdale.
Work to remove the former railway bridge will begin on Friday night and continue throughout the weekend with the bridge being gradually dismantled over the course of the two days.
To ensure the work is completed safely, the road under the bridge must be closed from 7pm on Friday 21 January until 6am on Monday 24 January, when the road will reopen in time for the morning rush hour.
Councillor Richard Knowles, Chair of GMITA’s Capital Projects Committee, said: “The demolition of the southern half of the bridge, the final phase of removing the Oldham Mumps viaduct, marks the beginning of the next chapter for Metrolink in the area.
“The new Metrolink line to Oldham and Rochdale, which will run through this junction at ground level, will open up new opportunities for work, education, business and leisure, improving the accessibility of the communities it serves.”
Councillor Howard Sykes, Leader of Oldham Council, added: “We delayed this work until after Christmas so that town centre retailers and commuters were not inconvenienced at a busy time.
“Now, the demolition of the southern Mumps bridge opens up this key gateway to Oldham town centre, and is a major milestone towards the building of the new Metrolink public transport interchange at Mumps.
“Metrolink is vital in readying the borough to capitalise on the economic recovery. It’s the catalyst that will enable the borough to attract investment from developers and retailers, and position Oldham as a place to live, visit, work and invest in.”
During the demolition, westbound traffic approaching the roundabout will be diverted along either St Mary’s Way, Egerton Street and Shaw Road, or alternatively Park Road, Glodwick Road and Cross Street. Eastbound traffic will be able to cross the roundabout as usual.
All traffic diversions will be clearly signposted. Pedestrian routes will be maintained at all times.
The removal of the southern half of the Oldham Mumps viaduct follows the demolition of the northern half, which was completed over a Bank Holiday weekend in August last year.
The work will be carried out by MPact-Thales on behalf of Greater Manchester Passenger Transport Executive (GMPTE), which implements the policies of Greater Manchester Integrated Transport Authority (GMITA).