Councillor hopeful of progress on repairing well-loved Inverness Infirmary Bridge
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There are now "real hopes of solid progress" on vital repairs to the popular Inverness Infirmary Bridge, according to Inverness West councillor Alex Graham.
Concerns were raised about the bridge last year, with claims that it risked closure after the need for major repairs was highlighted.
Councillor Graham, Inverness West said: "The bridge is very heavily used.
"A monthly average of 40,000 pedestrian and 7,000 cyclist movements are made across the bridge.
"The 83-metre suspension footbridge is a vital part of our city's active travel network as well as a fantastic part of the Inverness landscape."
"My Inverness West ward colleagues Councillor Bill Boyd and Councillor Graham Ross have also been very concerned about the Infirmary Bridge and are anxious for repairs to be carried out
"So it was encouraging to see that a recommendation to allocate £550,000 for repairs to the bridge has been put forward to the council's economy and infrastructure committee this week.
The committee meets this Wednesday and this is one of seven recommendations for applying a £7.4 million capital allocation for strategic roads schemes across a range of repairs in many areas of the Highlands.
"The bridge work may actually cost less than £550,000," added Councillor Graham. "The committee report highlights there may be opportunities for match funding or other investments for it.
"Bridge repairs are complicated. Various consents are required and wildlife, especially fish, have be protected. It will be 2022 before the work is completed, but once done the bridge's life will be extended for a further 20-25 years.
"It's great that this progress has been made, and I hope the committee will approve this recommendation and help to safeguard this vital part of our travel network."