Durham County Council is to install a temporary Bailey bridge at Deerness Bridge by the end of May, reopening the travel link across the river which had to close urgently last month.
Scheduled inspections of Deerness Bridge identified that the bridge had come to the end of its useful life and a decision was made to close it to all traffic and pedestrians in the interests of public safety on 13 April.
The temporary Bailey bridge will be installed on top of the existing bridge, with work to be completed by the end of May.
Once ready, the Bailey bridge will be single lane with traffic lights at either end.
It will be suitable for buses but will have an eighteen tonne weight restriction.
There will also be provision for pedestrians and cyclists.
John Reed, the council’s head of technical services, said: “We apologise for any inconvenience or difficulties caused by the closing of the bridge, and would like to thank local people and all users of the route for their on-going patience.
“The temporary Bailey bridge will enable us to reopen this vital route whilst we develop our plans for a permanent replacement.”
Until the Bailey bridge is ready, diversions will remain in place.
These include a temporary weight restriction of 7.5 tonnes, 40 mile per hour speed limit and one way traffic, north to south from the junction of Broadgate Road and Cockhouse Lane (B6302) to Fairfalls Terrace.
A 7.5 tonne weight restriction will remain in place on the Broadgate Road and Cockhouse Lane junction to Fairfalls Terrace route once the Bailey bridge is open.