Name unveiled for Lowestoft Lake Lothing Third Crossing as final go-ahead given
- Credit: Archant
Lowestoft’s Lake Lothing Third Crossing is to be called the Gull Wing, it has been announced – with councillors giving their final approval.
A trio of pupils from Somerleyton Primary School came up with the winning name in a competition of schools to christen the bridge, beating 21 other entries.
It was unveiled at Suffolk County Council’s cabinet meeting on Tuesday afternoon where councillors from the administration gave unanimous backing to submit the final business case to the Department for Transport, which should see construction begin in spring next year ahead of a summer 2023 opening.
MORE: Lake Lothing Third Crossing costs escalate by £34mThe cabinet also agreed to borrow the shortfall in funds needed to complete the project, after it emerged that costs had increased from around £91million to an estimated £125m.
Suffolk County Council leader Matthew Hicks said: “It will be an infrastructure project of national importance and a really significant step forward for the town of Lowestoft and the whole of the east coast region.
“It’s only a part of the plan for the renaissance of Lowestoft, which includes the granting of £43m for the flood risk management project, and East Suffolk Council’s approval of the Lowestoft Masterplan.”
According to cabinet member for health, James Reeder, the winning name was inspired by the shape of bridge’s fins which look like wings of a bird.
Mr Reeder said the name captures “the unique visual impact of what is going to be an iconic bridge”.
The cabinet’s approval means the final business case will be sent to the DfT, and the construction contractor is set to be announced in the next few weeks.
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Waveney MP Peter Aldous pledged to ensure the DfT released the funds in a timely manner so that work could begin on schedule.
He added: “It’s vital for the future of Lowestoft and the surrounding area – it will be a catalyst of change not just for Lowestoft but for the whole of Suffolk.”
The bridge is set to significantly reduce congestion in and around the town, particularly when vehicles get snared up around the Bascule Bridge, which in turn will help attract investment and new businesses to the area.
MORE: Lake Lothing Third Crossing vital for Lowestoft economy say councillorsThe DfT’s contribution to the scheme remains at £73.39m, meaning the remainder will be borrowed by the county council, which also includes some contingency funds.
That equates to just over £64m in borrowed funds and £6.9m from existing council funds.