From this Friday, more than half of the Croydon tram network will be shut down, and buses in and around Addiscombe and Shirley will undergo considerable re-routing over a 10-day period, as Transport for London undertakes major civil engineering work towards the completion of the strengthening of the Blackhorse Lane Bridge.
The road closures are expected to cause huge traffic disruption, too, as a large section of the A232 will be closed while the works are undertaken.
The bridge at Blackhorse Lane had become unsafe for modern traffic loads and was closed in 2016.
Works had been due to begin in 2017 to strengthen the bridge, with it due to re-open early in 2019, but in autumn 2018 TfL advised Croydon Council that work would not be completed until 2020, at the earliest.
This was deemed to be not good enough by the MP for Croydon Central, Sarah Jones, and by Mayor of London Sadiq Khan, who in January ordered TfL to pull their fingers out and get the job done.
The 10 days of road and tram closures coming up, just before the end of the school holidays, is hoped will accelerate progress to see the speedy completion of large sections of the bridge work, and several other transport improvements in the area.
“There is a rolling maintenance programme for the trams which includes updating track, ballast and lighting to ensure a reliable service can be maintained for customers,” a TfL spokesman told Inside Croydon today. “We have timed some of this regular maintenance to coincide with work at Blackhorse Lane to help reduce the need for further closures that may impact customers.”
TfL has since provided further and fuller details of the works being undertaken, which range from major civil engineering projects, to resurfacing works, through to gutter and drain clearance.
“As part of our programme to renew London Trams infrastructure, from 01.00 Friday August 23 until 04.00 Monday September 2 there will be some temporary service changes for trams and buses and a closure of the A232 on the Transport for London road network in the Sandilands, Addiscombe and Shirley area,” TfL said.
“We appreciate a closure of this scale will cause disruption and inconvenience but it has been carefully planned so that we can complete a number of improvements within this period, reducing the need for further closures in the future.”
• Track renewal work on Chepstow Road
• Waterproofing work on Addiscombe Road Bridge
• Lighting maintenance within Sandilands tram tunnel
• Demolition work at Blackhorse Lane bridge
• Ballast tram track renewal work between Lower Addiscombe Road tram crossing point and Woodside tram stop
• Electrical upgrade works at the London Trams sub-station along Oaks Road
• Minor civil engineering works in the area during the day-time. This will include dropped kerb construction work on Addiscombe Road.
“This work would typically need to happen at night, but due to the closure could be completed quicker during the day,” TfL said.
For the period of the works:
• London Tram services will not run between East Croydon and New Addington, or East Croydon and Elmers End and Beckenham Junction. Tram services will operate between Wimbledon and East Croydon at a reduced frequency in both directions
• Bus routes 119, 194 and 198 will not serve Addiscombe Road in either direction. Instead, they will divert via Shirley Road, Lower Addiscombe Road and Cherry Orchard Road
• Bus route 466 will not serve Shirley Hills Road, Upper Shirley Road or Addiscombe Road. Instead, it will divert via Coombe Lane, Coombe Road and Park Hill Road
• We will increase the number of buses on busy routes and provide some tram replacement bus services
• A232 Chepstow Road will be closed between its junctions with Addiscombe Road, Radcliffe Road and Clyde Road
• A232 Addiscombe Road will be closed at its junctions with Sandilands in the south and Ashburton Road in the north
• Traffic will be diverted via A212 Cherry Orchard Road, Lower Addiscombe Road and Shirley Road in the north, and via Park Hill and Coombe Lane in the south
And TfL added: “Information regarding these temporary changes and travel advice will be displayed at local bus and tram stops ahead of the start of the work.
“Should tram or bus passengers need further information about this closure, they can contact TfL customer services on 0343 222 1234 or visit the Tram shop near East Croydon Station.”
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