Canal tun­nel at heart of city to shut for Metro ex­ten­sion

Birmingham Post - - NEWS - Jane Tyler Staff Re­porter

ABUSY Birm­ing­ham canal tun­nel will close for sev­eral weeks for strength­en­ing work as a new phase of work for the Mid­land Metro tram ex­ten­sion be­gins.

Broad Street Canal Tun­nel will be shut for nar­row boats and pedes­tri­ans who nor­mally use its foot­paths to walk between Gas Street Basin and Brind­ley­place.

The clo­sure from this week will re­main in place un­til early spring.

Road traffic will be able to con­tinue use to use Broad Street, though two-way traffic sig­nals on the street above will be in place.

The works have been sched­uled by the Mid­land Metro Al­liance, with the sup­port of the Canal & River Trust, dur­ing win­ter to min­imise dis­rup­tion along­side the canal, which is tra­di­tion­ally busier in warmer months.

Mid­land Metro Al­liance will use an in­no­va­tive method to strengthen the bridge, con­sist­ing of ad­di­tional steel­work fit­ted within the ex­ist­ing brick­work the late 18th cen­tury struc­ture.

The sys­tem will be in­stalled from the un­der­side of the bridge and will re­sult in less noise dur­ing works.

It is an­tic­i­pated to be much faster than other meth­ods and will pre­vent the need for sig­nif­i­cant im­pact on the road above.

Steve Grimes, Mid­land Metro Al­liance project di­rec­tor for the West­side Metro ex­ten­sion, said: “We recog­nise that there will be some dis­rup­tion to those liv­ing, work­ing, trav­el­ling and vis­it­ing the city dur­ing this vi­tal next stage of Metro works.

“We are work­ing closely with Birm­ing­ham City Coun­cil, lo­cal Busi­ness Im­prove­ment Dis­tricts, the Canal & River Trust, and Trans­port for West Mid­lands to min­imise the im­pact.”

The Metro ex­ten­sion fol­lows one from St Chads to Grand Cen­tral, which opened for pas­sen­gers in May 2016.

Once com­plete, the Metro will op­er­ate between Grand Cen­tral and Ha­gley Road in Edg­bas­ton. of

> Broad Street Canal Tun­nel will be closed for Metro ex­ten­sion works

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