Queen Elizabeth II Metro Bridge

The Queen Elizabeth II Bridge carries the Tyne and Wear Metro between Newcastle upon Tyne and Gateshead over the River Tyne in North East England. The bridge was developed as part of the Tyne and Wear Metro system, for which it was purpose-built.

It was designed by W. A. Fairhurst & Partners, and constructed by Cementation Construction Ltd. and the Cleveland Bridge & Engineering Company at a cost of £4.9 million.

The two sections of the bridge were built simultaneously from each bank and eventually met in the centre in August 1978. It was officially opened by Queen Elizabeth II on 6 November 1981, nine days before regular Metro service began.

The bridge structure is a three span continuous truss of varying depth with a main span of 164.5m and approach spans of 117.5m and 70.5m. The bridge incorporates two continuous welded rail tracks on ballast to carry electrically powered rail passenger cars and diesel works trains for the Tyne & Wear Metro. Two ring piers and abutments were constructed in reinforced concrete and support the superstructure which comprises approximately 4,000 tonnes of fabricated steelwork.

W A Fairhurst & Partners not only carried out the design of the bridge, they were also involved in the production of relevant detailed drawings and administered the contract on site.

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