Glasgow Harbour roadworks complete

27 Feb 2008

by Ian Lundy, Evening Times

It has taken two-and-a-half years and cost more than £25million, but the end is in sight for the massive Glasgow Harbour road-building scheme.

Within two weeks the traffic cones and diversion signs that have become a feature of the area will disappear.

It will be the first major step in connecting the new waterfront development to the West End communities on the other side of the Clydeside Expressway.

A new road bridge and a new footbridge will link Glasgow Harbour to Partick.

Slip roads will join the Expressway with the site of the new Glasgow Transport Museum and planned hotel complex at the mouth of the River Kelvin.

And a new bridge over the Kelvin will provide a route for the proposed Fastlink tram service, which it is expected will run the length of the development.

The £25m scheme is part of a huge building project stretching from the SECC to the Clyde Tunnel and with a total value of £2.2billion.

It is one of Glasgow's most high-profile regeneration schemes and the roads project has been one of the biggest challenges for developers.

At one point a stretch of the Clydeside Expressway had to be lowered to allow the two new bridges to be built over it. Lanes - and sometimes entire sections of the road - were regularly closed at weekends and nights as the work was carried out.

Euan Jamieson, managing director of Clydeport, which owns the land on which the development is taking place, said a new masterplan for the area would go before Glasgow City Council soon.

He said: "By lowering the Expressway we have opened up access from the site to Partick railway station, the shopping centre, and other things."

The project has also seen the construction of a new junction at Hayburn. This will replace the old one.

"We also have a walkway from Partick station right into the site area," added Mr Jamieson. " Eventually, that will take people down to the houses, the retail park and a large public square.

"A footbridge that has yet to be completed across the Kelvin will take people to a high-quality square at the entrance to the Transport Museum.

"It has been two-and-a-half years of work and I am delighted with the job the contractors and the design team have done.

"We have managed to keep the road going even though the whole Expressway was diverted.

"I have not had a long list of people complaining to me about it.

"There have been people who have moved into the flats who have asked when the roads are going to be finished and when other phases will start. But I have yet to meet a resident who is negative about the way the development is progressing."

Neil Greig, of the Institute of Advanced Motorists Trust, said it would be a "great relief" for all Expressway users to see the completion of the roads project.

"The Expressway is always very busy and any disruption was always going to lead to delays at peak times.

"There have been times when it has been confusing, with all the chopping and changing of roads, but that is normal for a project this size.

"But they have moved the road to incorporate future development and it has been a success and people will soon forget all the headaches there were during the construction process.

"It is part of a bigger vision for the reopening of Clydeside, but all people have been seeing is months and months of roadworks.

"On a wet and windy winter day it is difficult to think about that bigger vision, but it will soon become apparent."

Reproduced with the permission of The Evening Times(Glasgow) © Newsquest (Herald & Times) Ltd

  • Roadworks nearing completion