A video released by Highways England condenses 11 months of work on the £6.4 million Merafield Bridge scheme at Plympton into a short film.
The whole scheme, which was successfully completed on time, was captured on timelapse and real time video as well as drone cameras when the old bridge was demolished.
The programme was innovatively designed so that the new bridge was in operation before the demolition of the old one, keeping disruption to a minimum.
The video captures all the progress on site as the new structure is built and opened before 50kg of explosive charges blow the old bridge down.
Cameras also capture the huge clean-up operation after the demolition which resulted in 100% of materials being recycled from the old bridge and used in construction projects across the South West.
South West regional director, Andrew Page-Dove, said: “This video really shows how much work went into planning and executing this significant bridge scheme and we are very proud of what we have been able to achieve for drivers and the local community.
“The recycling record of the project is also impressive and it’s great to think that waste from the old Merafield Bridge will now being used in the construction of new buildings and structures all over Devon and Cornwall.”
There were 139 tonnes of metal and 2,000 tonnes of rubble removed following the demolition of the old bridge, all of which is likely to be used on construction projects locally.
Around 3,000 tonnes of crushed recycled aggregate was also brought to site to form a ‘crash deck’ to protect the trunk road as the old bridge dropped on to it. This aggregate was also taken away for reuse afterwards.
The old bridge was suffering from alkali silica reaction, commonly known as ‘concrete cancer’. In time, the structure would eventually become unsafe, and therefore needed replacing.