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Timeline laid out for Lowestoft Lake Lothing Crossing work

PUBLISHED: 13:24 15 October 2018 | UPDATED: 15:29 15 October 2018

What the Lake Lothing Third Crossing, pictured with the bridge down, could look like Picture: WSP.

What the Lake Lothing Third Crossing, pictured with the bridge down, could look like Picture: WSP.

Archant

Detailed designs for the Lake Lothing Crossing in Lowestoft are set to begin soon, as the final evaluation of shortlisted contractors has been completed.

A formal planning application for the bridge was submitted to the Planning Inspectorate by Suffolk County Council in June, before an invitation was sent for contractors to submit a bid for the tender.

An update by council leader Matthew Hicks prepared for this week’s full council meeting said that negotiations with shortlisted contractors were held over the summer, and the final evaluation was completed in mid-September.

Now, stage one of the contract is set to get underway in the coming weeks which will feature detailed designs being drawn up, and a construction target price agreed, although it is not yet clear when the contractor will be announced.

Stage one is set to last 12 months.

Land for the Lake Lothing Crossing has already been purchased Picture: ARCHANTLand for the Lake Lothing Crossing has already been purchased Picture: ARCHANT

In his report, Mr Hicks said: “I am delighted that this infrastructure project continues to make good progress.

“The procurement of the design and build (D&B) contract is an essential part of the delivery of this project.

“Good progress has been made in the procurement of a D&B contractor who will complete the detail design and construct the bridge and we are now in the final stage before award.

“SCC received initial quality based submissions from a good number of international contractors.”

Suffolk County Council leader Matthew Hicks said the design stage is set to take 12 months Picture: GREGG BROWNSuffolk County Council leader Matthew Hicks said the design stage is set to take 12 months Picture: GREGG BROWN

County council’s cabinet will be required to approve the start of stage two of the design and build contract, with construction expected to get underway at the end of next year.

The latest report added that the construction is expected to take 28 months, with a target opening in early 2022.

Last month, the council said the lake itself will need to be closed to all vessels for around three weeks during work to install the bridge, but said that it did not anticipate on this having a significant impact on the nearby port.

Associated British Ports, which runs the complex, refuted the claims however, and said that it could have a “significant negative impact” on vital cargo transportation.

Town leaders have said the bridge was of great significance to the town, and is set to unlock further economic benefit in the area. They say it is also due to bring traffic improvements through the town.

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