Squiggly Bridge opens new route to city

14 May 2009

The new Broomielaw - Tradeston Bridge has opened, providing an important pedestrian and cycle link across the river from Tradeston into the heart of the Glasgow's International Financial Services District.

Constructed as part of an overall £33 million regeneration project in Tradeston, other elements involved raising and strengthening existing 100-year-old quay walls and creating new open space and walkways for the public. 

Spanning just over 106 metres, the Tradeston Bridge is an essential component of the development programme for the Tradeston area and was built with funding secured on the basis of the future investment it will encourage on both sides of the river.

Linking Tradeston in the south of the river with the International Financial Services District (IFSD) and the city centre, the bridge provides an improved cycle and pedestrian route, while creating a focal point for the quayside area, with future development potential.

The regeneration project was funded by Glasgow City Council, Scottish Enterprise and the European Regional Development Fund.

Councillor Purcell said: "The Tradeston Bridge and the wider scheme to develop new public places will act as a catalyst for future regeneration of the Tradeston area.

"It is important that the public purse continues to invest in the city's infrastructure at this difficult time to bolster Glasgow's economy and pave the way for future development along the Clyde waterfront."

 "This project will also enhance the award winning International Financial Services District by providing an easily accessible link to this area, for both residents and visitors to Glasgow, and provide a recreational quarter for the public."

 Stephen Gallagher, managing director commercial and infrastructure at Scottish Enterprise, said: "The opening of the new Tradeston Bridge is a key milestone in the ongoing transformation of the Clyde waterfront area and provides a vital link between Tradeston and Glasgow's International Financial Services District.

"Enhancing direct accessibility between the north and south banks of the river will encourage future investment and maximise the economic development potential of the area by helping to create a vibrant and dynamic waterfront with international appeal.

"The bridge and the public realm works add significantly to the attractiveness of Scottish Enterprise landholdings nearby at 236 and 220 Broomielaw."

As with many civil engineering projects much of the work and investment has taken place below ground and therefore cannot be seen, but it is crucial and acts as a necessary platform to allow the aesthetic finishes such as the bridge and the landscaping elements to be created.

The expansion and strengthening, and in some cases replacement of the quay walls, on both sides of the river and the new walkways were designed and supervised by engineering consultants WS Atkins plc and constructed by Graham Construction Ltd.

Civil engineering contractor BAM Nuttall Ltd oversaw the design and build of the unique fin shaped bridge with engineering consultants Halcrow working alongside architects Dissing and Weitling to design and construct the bridge.

Dubbed the 'Squiggly bridge' due to its lazy 'S' shape, the Tradeston Bridge was designed in this way to accommodate the River Clyde's tidal range and aid navigational clearance.

 As Glasgow's newest bridge for cyclists it will also provide access to an existing national cycle route that currently crosses the river at Bell's Bridge. And long term the Council hopes to expand these cycle routes south of the river.

About IFSD

Glasgow's International Financial Services District is an ambitious ten-year (2001-2011) project which aims to deliver:

  • 2million sq ft of new office space
  • 20,000 new jobs
  • £50million investment in the broadband network
  • Highly trained, flexible workforce through skills initiatives

Since launching, over 15,000 jobs have been created through new investment, expansion and diversified development. Partners estimate that more than one billion pounds have been invested in the project in the past seven and a half years. The IFSD is the catalyst for regenerating the Broomielaw and the west city centre area. Complementary activities such as residential, commercial and leisure uses are being encouraged, bringing life and activity to the area out with normal office hours.

Several of the world's leading financial companies now have a presence in Glasgow, including: ACE, Barclays, BNP Paribas, Direct Line, esure, First Data, JP Morgan, Morgan Stanley and National Australia Group. The presence of these companies underlines Glasgow's credentials as a leading centre in the financial industry. Other firms have moved into the district from other Glasgow locations, including British Steel Pensions Fund, Clydesdale Bank and The Weir Group.

The IFSD won the UK Award for Best Public Private Partnership from the Association for Public Sector Excellence in September 2008.


  • Atkins employees Philip Mendlesohn and Ron Monaghan join Councillor Steven Purcell on the new bridge which is on their cycle route to work each day