Civil engineer Graham cheers £80m contract to build bridge over River Clyde

Civil engineering specialist Graham has been chosen for an £80m contract to build the first opening road bridge over the River Clyde.

Councillors from Renfrewshire Council’s finance board have agreed to award the Clyde Waterfront and Renfrew Riverside contract to the firm, and the agreement to build the bridge – creating new connections into Scotland’s manufacturing innovation district – has been approved for award.

The project is jointly funded by the UK and Scottish governments through the £1.13 billion Glasgow City Region City Deal. It is expected to support around 700 jobs during its construction and generate hundreds of subcontract and supplier opportunities.

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Graham, which has a waterfront office in Renfrewshire at Braehead, will deliver the main construction and provide more than 100 community benefits including jobs, apprenticeships, and community volunteering activities.

The new bridge is expected to 'help better connect communities with significant employment and development opportunities'. Picture: contributed.

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Leo Martin, MD for Graham’s civil engineering division, said: “We’re delighted to have been chosen to deliver the Clyde Waterfront and Renfrew Riverside project, including the River Clyde bridge, with our design partners Ramboll and Amey.

“The new bridge will provide a gateway to the area’s fast-growing manufacturing innovation district and help better connect communities with significant employment and development opportunities for what will be a transformational project for the Renfrewshire and Glasgow City regions.

“Graham [specialises] in delivering complex civil engineering projects and our innovative construction solution will minimise the carbon impact, while we will utilise our knowledge and experience from previous landmark bridge construction and installations such as the Samuel Beckett Bridge in Dublin and Carpenters Land Bridge in Stratford to ensure this key infrastructure scheme is completed to the highest standards, while ensuring we deliver a sustainable legacy and positive impact.”

Also commenting was Renfrewshire Council Leader Iain Nicolson, who said the organisation looks forward to working with Graham and its project partners “on what is a hugely significant project for Renfrewshire, the Glasgow City Region and indeed Scotland”.

He added: “We are excited by its potential in creating a vibrant attractive waterfront and connecting communities to their work, to hospitals and to education.

Opportunities

"Short term, it will accelerate economic recovery from the devastating impact of the Covid-19 pandemic by creating jobs and boosting opportunities for suppliers, and in the long term, the new infrastructure opens up access to development opportunities on both sides of the Clyde and will ensure the success of [the Advanced Manufacturing Innovation District Scotland], cementing Renfrewshire’s position as the home of manufacturing innovation in Scotland.”

A twin-leaf swing bridge for vehicles, cyclists and pedestrians from Renfrew to the boundary between Glasgow and West Dunbartonshire forms the centrepiece of the project.

All planning consent is in place and construction is scheduled to start in the spring and take three years to complete, with the contract to be finalised later this month after the procurement process concludes.

Michael Matheson, cabinet secretary for transport, infrastructure and connectivity, said: “It’s great to see such significant progress in delivering this transformative project, which will create jobs, apprenticeships, and new connections into the manufacturing innovation district.”

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