The signing of the contracts for the new Cockhill Bridge took place yesterday evening (Monday) at the former Buncrana Town Council offices.
Wills Bros Ltd. Civil Engineering Contractors have been appointed by Donegal County Council for the construction of the new structure which will commence in the coming weeks.
This project will entail the construction of a new single span bridge over the Crana River to accommodate the realigned R238 at Cockhill, Buncrana, Co Donegal.
The existing bridge structure will remain as a pedestrian bridge.
The proposed new bridge structure will consist of precast beams made composite with a reinforced concrete slab. The substructure will contain reinforced concrete bankseat abutments, supported on pads made integral with the deck at the diaphragms. Precast prestressed concrete ‘W’ beams with a reinforced concrete deck slab make up the superstructure.
Works will also entail the construction of earthworks embankments to both the north and south of the Crana River.
Works will commence in early March and it is expected that the bridge will be constructed by the autumn of this year.
Speaking at the signing of the contracts Cllr. Bernard McGuinness, Cathaoirleach of the Inishowen MD welcomed everyone to Inishowen and said that this was a very important day for the people of Buncrana and indeed for the entire community in Inishowen.
“As one of the longest serving members of Donegal County Council I can recall this new bridge being talked about for many, many years and I am delighted to be here today at the signing of the contracts for these construction works.
He added “the Cockhill Bridge represents an important gateway into north Inishowen and will benefit not only the local community but all the people of the peninsula as well as our visitors who come here to take in some of the most breathtaking scenery in the country”.
Cllr. McGuinness also thanked the former Minister for Transport, Tourism & Sport Paschal Donohoe TD and Minister of State Joe McHugh TD for their role in securing the €3m funding for this project.
The Cathaoirleach of Donegal County Council Cllr. Terence Slowey also attended the signing and thanked the Council staff and in particular the staff in the Roads Directorate for their work in bringing the project to this stage of development.
“I am delighted that this project has been prioritised. This bridge is an essential piece of infrastructure in the Inishowen Peninsula and is another step forward in helping the region realise it’s potential as a world class tourism destination. I am confident that the contractors Wills Bros Ltd will do a great job in the construction of this bridge and that every effort will be made to facilitate the needs of the local residents and businesses during the construction phase. I would also like to acknowledge the landowners for their co-operation and support for this project.”
Deputy Charlie McConalogue TD, Senator Padraig MacLochlainn and Minister of State for the Diaspora and Overseas Development Aid, Joe McHugh TD also addressed the gathering during the signing of the contracts.
Each speaker thanked those involved and paid a special tribute to the local community for their ongoing efforts in securing the construction of this bridge. They also acknowledged the work done by Council staff and each had a special mention for the local Council Roads team Seamus Hopkins, Eamonn Mahon, James Gill, Patsy Devlin and George Porter referring specifically to their tremendous work to date in laying the foundations for the new bridge.