M8 back to three lanes at Glasgow Airport
12 January 2012
Drivers using the M8 near Glasgow Airport will see all three lanes temporarily re-open from tomorrow (Thursday 12 January), following the completion of the first stage of essential strengthening works.
Traffic management has been in place since Boxing Day while essential works were undertaken to bring the White Cart Viaduct bridge up to modern standards.
The White Cart Viaduct carries the M8 over the White Cart Water immediately to the south of Glasgow Airport, and is a principal route to the airport.
Lane closures have inevitably resulted in delays in the past fortnight but this is expected to improve as day-time restrictions are lifted.
Work will continue in the carriageway during the night (20:00 - 06:00) and two lanes will be closed in each direction at this time.
Further work is still required on the bridge and from around 16th February, contraflow will be in operation (one lane will be closed in each direction). These restrictions are expected to last until April.
A Transport Scotland spokesperson said: “We are delighted that the first stage of these works has gone well and that we are able to get the M8 back up to three lanes in this area until the next stage commences in February.
“Bridges like any other structure have a finite life-span and must be maintained and upgraded so we appreciate the patience of motorists during this time. We are aiming to have the strengthening and refurbishment fully completed by Spring, at which point the route will revert to 60 miles per hour.”
The 40mph temporary speed limit will remain in place until work is fully complete by Spring and will continue to be enforced by the average speed cameras. This is to both support the safety of roadworkers during the overnight closures and provide a margin of safety to road users, as a number of temporary carriageway reinstatements, an integral part of the overnight works programme will be visible to drivers.
The White Cart Viaduct was built in 1968 and now carries over 90,000 vehicles daily. These essential strengthening works are unavoidable and on completion will ensure the bridge is brought up to modern standards and can comply with current loading and safety requirements.
This is the third phase of a £30m programme of works to upgrade the White Cart Viaduct and is being undertaken by BAM Nuttall.
This will be followed up with phase four to repaint the external steelwork of the box girders, undertake concrete repairs and below deck maintenance work. No traffic management will be required for this phase. Estimated completion of the full programme of works is 2016.
Motorists using the M8 can access up to the minute journey time information at www.trafficscotland.org. Further journey planning information is also available on Twitter and via the Traveline Scotland/Transport Scotland travel app.