A9 Kessock Bridge resurfacing

The traffic flow over the bridge is approximately 30,000 vehicles per day.

The bridge has a 1,052m long continuous steel deck superstructure with a 240m main span, carrying two lanes of traffic each direction. It also includes footways / cycleways.

The structure is supported on concrete columns with cutwater plinths at sea level and concrete abutments at either end of the bridge.

Situated over the two main piers, twin 45m high single cell welded steel box pylons, support the deck superstructure by means of steel wire cables.

Why was the work needed?

Transport Scotland has carried out essential works to the Kessock Bridge in order to ensure its reliable service for the next 30 years.

The road surface on the bridge reached the end of its maintainable life and the need for ad-hoc repairs is increasingly disruptive to traffic. It was necessary to intervene and resurface the bridge in its entirety, thereby saving motorists time lost to roadworks.

What was involved?

Specialist contractors undertook the following:

  • Removed the existing road surface
  • Repaired any defects to the bridge steel deck plate
  • Applied waterproofing to bridge steel deck plate
  • Resurfaced both carriageways

At the same time, we took the opportunity to:

  • Replace the bridge deck expansion joints
  • Replace the lighting columns
  • Replace the vehicle barriers in the central reserve and footways
  • Increase the height of the existing parapets so they are cycleway compliant
  • Resurface the footways and cycleways
  • Re-stress the cables on the bridge

How much did it cost?


What stage is it at?

Phase 1 of the works tackled the northbound carriageway and was completed in July 2013.

Phase 2 to repair the southbound carriageway commenced on 10 February 2014 with peak time traffic restrictions removed on 20th May (5 weeks early).

The works were undertaken by the contractor Balfour Beatty. The phasing of these works was programmed to avoid disruption to peak tourist traffic in July and August.

How will it affect me?

The works represent a significant investment by Transport Scotland and are now completed.

Given the nature and scale of works we needed to consider the ways to minimise disruption to bridge users.

To assist with peak time traffic congestion a series of advanced road and traffic improvements were constructed.

These included:

  • The signalisation of junctions on the A82 and A9
  • Improvements to Longman Roundabout
  • Additional carriages on trains and buses at peak times
  • Southbound HGV/ Bus lane on the A9
  • Additional car parking provision at railway stations
  • The construction and reopening of Conon Bridge Railway Station

Transport Scotland continued to consult with key stakeholders including The Highland Council; HITRANS; Network Rail; ScotRail; Bus Operators; and Scottish Canals.

What is being done to reduce the environmental impact?

The environmental impact was minimised as the works are confined mainly to the bridge. Control measures were put in place to protect the local environment. Are there any other online legal documents / public notices relating to this project? A Notice of Determination and Marine License was published for this scheme.