A new bridge spanning the A2 at Whtifield is to be installed for Dover's first zero-emission bus service (credit: Colas Ltd)
A2 closure at Whitfield for bridge installation (14-17 July)
A key milestone in construction of Fastrack, Dover’s first purpose-built zero-emission bus route, takes place on the weekend of Friday 14 to Monday 17 July as a new 31.5m span bridge is installed across the A2 at Whitfield.
A short stretch of the A2 from the Whitfield roundabout to the Whitfield interchange (A256 junction) will be closed to all traffic from 9.00pm on Friday, 14 July to 5.00am on Monday, 17 July.
During the 60-hour operation, five 30m steel beams weighing 14.5 tonnes each will be lifted into position from the A2 by a 150-tonne crane. The beams were fabricated locally by Nusteel Structures based in Lympne, Hythe.
There will be a signed diversion via the White Cliffs Business Park (Honeywood Road and Honeywood Parkway) during the works to install the bridge. Where possible, traffic heading to or from the Port of Dover is recommended to use the A20/M20.
Dover Fastrack will offer an express electric bus route connecting new housing developments at Whitfield - and proposed new homes at the former Connaught Barracks site - with Dover town centre and high-speed train services from Dover Priory Station. Buses will also stop at the Dover District Leisure Centre and Dover Castle. Sections of the route have also been designed for pedestrian and cycle access.
Cllr Jamie Pout, Cabinet Member for Transport at Dover District Council, said: “Installing the bridge across the A2 is a key phase in construction of Dover’s first zero-emission bus route. It’s also a good example of how the Council is working with Homes England and Kent County Council (KCC) to deliver infrastructure and public transport alternatives to support new homes.”
Kent County Council’s Cabinet Member for Highways and Transport, David Brazier said: "These works are an exciting milestone in our progress of Dover Fastrack. Once operating, Dover Fastrack will offer key links to new housing developments along with better access to high-speed train services and the fantastic attractions that the town has to offer.”
Nicholas Dobbie, Project Director for Colas, said: "This key phase of the project has required extensive planning and liaison. We are looking forward to seeing the locally produced steel beams in position, ready for us to begin work on the next steps to complete the bridge construction.”
Notes to editors:
Installation of the new bridge on the weekend of 15/16 July is subject to weather conditions.
About Dover Fastrack
Fastrack buses will have priority on the proposed express route, including the new bus, cycle and pedestrian-only bridge across the A2 at Whitfield, and a new link road from the B&Q roundabout in Whitfield to Dover Road at Guston. The junction with Dover Road will be for buses, bicycles, and pedestrians only.
A fleet of new electric buses will operate on Dover Fastrack as part of the Department for Transport’s Zero Emission Bus Regional Areas (ZEBRA) scheme.
Dover Fastrack also creates an effective transport interchange with Southeastern train services, making it easy to access High Speed train services from Dover Priory railway station for commuting, leisure, and business trips to and from London. It will also provide a quick and easy way to reach the town centre and Dover Castle.
Dover Fastrack will provide a real alternative to the car for local journeys and help the district to become carbon neutral by 2050.
Dover Fastrack is backed by central government with £20.9m from a funding programme designed to help stimulate new housing development. DDC was awarded the grant by Homes England and is working in partnership with Kent County Council as the Highways Authority.
Posted on 30 June 2023