Ministry Updates On Swing Bridge Work Progress

February 6, 2017

Work on replacement of beams on the two approach spans at the Swing Bridge in St. George’s is scheduled to be completed “for the end of March 2017 subject to no unforeseen delays,” the Ministry of Public Works said.

In December 2015, the Ministry of Public Works said that in an “abundance of caution” they would place a weight restriction on Swing Bridge and enforce single lane traffic.

The Ministry then opened and closed Swing Bridge on March 30, 2016 for inspection and structural testing purposes. The contractor erected scaffolding in October to allow “urgent repairs to the bridge”, making it “impossible for most marine traffic to pass under the bridge”.

Slideshow showing the opening and closing the bridge for inspection and structural testing purposes:


Responding to queries from Bernews about how the project is progressing, a Ministry spokesperson said, “The Swing Bridge strengthening work entails repair works to the central swing span and the northern and southern approach spans.

“The state of deterioration of the central swing span crossbeams was worse than expected by engineers and instead of a simple re-enforcing of the existing beams, a decision was made to change all the cross [transverse] beams.

“The cost to repair the central swing span section of the bridge is $607,000 and the work on this section of the bridge is near completion, and once completed two lane traffic will be restored with the current weight restrictions.

“The Tender Invitation for the repair and replacement of beams on the two approach spans was published on Monday 28th November 2016 and this work will be completed by the same contractor and will commence imminently with completion scheduled for the end of March 2017 subject to no unforeseen delays.

“When this work is completed, the load rating will be reinstated to the standard loads [10 tons axle loads, GVW of 29 tons].

“For this kind of work, you would expect that at some point, the bridge will have to close; at least for a short period but the repair methods that are being used is enabling us to complete the work with the bridge remaining open.

“This strengthening work will extend the life of the bridge for at least 5 years.

“The feasibility study for a new bridge has already started and it is the Ministry’s intention to present the new bridge design in the coming months, with the aim for plans and specification to be completed by the end of year 2017.

“The total allocated fund for the project is $25M and at this stage no firm construction start date for a new bridge has been set.”

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Comments (10)

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  1. st. george's says:

    Interested in knowing if “The total allocated fund for the project is $25M and at this stage no firm construction start date for a new bridge has been set.” how are we going to spend $24m in the next 6 weeks?? Fund allocations are done annually and come March the allocated funds will be reallocated…

    And if we had that much allocated in this budget year why the hell are we spending $600k to fix it? Why not just replace the damn thing? i understand that replacement takes time but according to the above statement it is clear no replacemwnt was planned for this year.

    #watchthisspace #accountfortheremaning$24m+

    • Capital Account says:

      Calm down dear. The TAF is the total amount estimated for the project in its entirety, not just for the current financial year. Take a moment to review the budget book (freely available online), everything you need is there.

      This should in future help you to avoid the mistake many posters make of going off half-cocked and making yourself look like a prize plonker.

    • Micro says:

      $25m allocated to research and build a new bridge of which no time frame as been established for the start of construction for project.

  2. Good Guy says:

    We need 2 new bridges, new airport, new roads, new school system, new electric power plant, better internet communication, better support for the elderly, better protection for minors………..

    • wahoo says:

      More simply put we need money! Now where did I put that $800M….?

      • Triangle Drifter says:

        And where did that money go that we now need something like $600,000 per DAY to pay interest on?

  3. reddamtibi says:


  4. Y-Gurl says:

    Maybe if government hadn’t jumped into bed with the Canadians on an airport we don’t need we would have enough to repair all the bridges and causeway

    • Will says:

      You don’t get the airport deal do you? It’s clear you don’t. We WILL have money to do the bridges because a Canadian company is building the airport for us at no cost to us…where have you been?!?!?!

    • Check says:

      Not exactly. The huge cost of maintenance would still leave us with no money. Perhaps a more pertinent question should be “why do we have no money?”

      Another thought – tale a moment to have a chat with the staff who have to work in that airport every day, and then see if you’ve changed your view on whether we need a new one or not. I suspect you may well change your mind.