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M5 motorway closures planned for bridge replacement

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The M5 will be fully closed overnight between junctions 13 and 14 in Gloucestershire on Saturday, 25 June as a new bridge is lifted into place at Michaelwood Services.

The 40-year-old footbridge spanning the southbound and northbound areas of the services was closed to pedestrians in 2018 and dismantled in early 2020 as part of a National Highways project.

Preparatory work has been ongoing since February as part of a £3.2 million replacement project, and a new bridge footbridge and fittings will be installed between Saturday, 25 June and Monday, 4 July to enable access between the southbound and northbound areas of the services.

A 230-tonne crane will be employed to slot the new 200ft (61-metre) footbridge in place and during the work, the M5 will be fully closed in both directions between Junction 13 (Stroud) and Junction 14 (Thornbury) from 8pm on Saturday, 25 June until 6am on Sunday, 26 June.

Clearly signed diversions will be in place via the A419 and A38 Bristol Road, and drivers are advised to allow extra time for their journeys while this essential work is carried out.

Michaelwood bridge removal | M5 motorway closures planned for bridge replacement
The original bridge was removed in 2020.

Once the main bridge is installed, contractors MJ Church and King Lifting will employ two 200-tonne cranes to lift the ramps and stairs into place under overnight closures during the following week.

The southbound carriageway will also be closed overnight on the Sunday (8pm to 6am) and Friday, 1 July and Monday, 4 July, while the northbound carriageway will be closed for overnight work on Monday, 27 June, Tuesday, 28 June and Thursday, 30 June.

michaelwood old bridge | M5 motorway closures planned for bridge replacement
The original footbridge at Michaelwood Service Station was removed in 2020. Picture: Matt Bigwood.

The closures are being communicated well in advance and the same diversion routes will apply.

Adrian Simon, National Highways’ Project Manager, said: “We appreciate the closure will have an effect on journey times, and we appreciate roadworks are frustrating but we are carrying out this essential work under a number of overnight closures to minimise disruption.

“Once the main deck has been installed on the first night, we are putting a number of directional closures in place for safety reasons while we carry out the installation of ramps, stairs and other work, and we thank all drivers in advance for their co-operation and patience.”

Once the bridge has been lifted into place, finishing works will continue until August, including the completion of furnishing and fittings and landscaping.

Drivers can obtain up-to-the-minute travel information on local radio, the @HighwaysSWEST Twitter feed, by phoning the National Highways Information Line on 0300 123 5000 or by accessing the website: www.trafficengland.com

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