THE active travel bridge over the M8 at Sighthill is to open to the public soon.
It is part of a wider network connecting Sighthill with the nearby city centre and adjacent communities in north Glasgow and is a key feature of the £250million regeneration of the area.
The main span is made of weathered steel, which will mean lower maintenance costs, and also reflects both the area’s industrial heritage and the front of the nearby St Martin’s Primary School campus.
Weighing 1,000 tonnes and 74.24 metres across, with a narrowest width of 7.5metres (including 1.25 metres of landscaping on either side) the bridge deck is part of a striking wider public realm project featuring 800 trees, 10,000 plants and a distinctive southern approach with a ramp of 210 metres.
The Sighthill Bridge was funded through the Glasgow City Region City Deal, with additional money from active travel organisation Sustrans.
A date for public access to the bridge has still to be confirmed pending finishing touches.
Councillor Susan Aitken, leader of Glasgow City Council and chair of the Glasgow City Region City Deal, said: “The ongoing regeneration of Sighthill is one of the biggest projects of its kind on these islands and the completion of this remarkable bridge is a real landmark in that journey.
“It signals the reconnection of Sighthill with not only the city centre but also neighbouring communities in North Glasgow.”
Scottish Government business minister Ivan McKee said: “Opening of this new bridge over the M8 represents another milestone in the delivery of the Sighthill Regeneration Project as part of the Scottish Government-funded Glasgow City Region City Deal.
“This investment will make it easier to travel from the north of the city, contributing to sustainable economic growth by creating jobs, encouraging active travel and providing the infrastructure to support and attract businesses to Glasgow and the surrounding areas.”
UK Government Minister for Scotland Malcolm Offord said: “It’s fantastic news that Sighthill Bridge — a key part of one of the biggest regenerations seen anywhere in the UK — is opening soon.
“Reconnecting Sighthill to the city centre and communities in North Glasgow, the infrastructure — part of the transformative Glasgow City Region Deal into which the UK Government is investing £523million — will help breathe new life into the area.”
Karen McGregor, Scotland director at Sustrans, said: “This new link is an important achievement for Sighthill, allowing many more people in the area to leave the car at home when making their everyday journeys.
“The new bridge provides a safe and accessible walking, wheeling, and cycling link across the M8 corrido. Sighthill residents will also be connected to National Cycle Network Route 754 along the Forth and Clyde Canal.”