How the Third River Crossing is transforming Great Yarmouth

The third river crossing project in Great Yarmouth.

The Third River Crossing takes shape in Great Yarmouth. - Credit: Mike Page

It's the biggest construction scheme under way in Great Yarmouth - and will transform how traffic gets about the town.

The £121m Third River Crossing is on track to open next year.

Great Yarmouth's third river crossing.

An artist's impression of how Great Yarmouth's Third River Crossing will look. - Credit: Norfolk County Council

The crossing over the River Yare will link the A47 at Harfrey's roundabout to the port and the enterprise zone on the other side of the river.

Council leaders have said the new lifting bridge will ease traffic congestion on the town's roads, shortening journey times and improving journey reliability.

And they say it will also help to maximise investment, regeneration and economic growth opportunities in the town and across the borough.

The Department of Transport has awarded £98m towards the cost of the crossing, with Norfolk County Council covering the rest of the cost.

Construction on the bridge started in January last year, with a number of terraced homes in Queen Anne's Road and Southtown Road demolished so the project could go ahead.

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Building the bridge has already brought a huge boost to the town's economy.

Lead contractor BAM Farrans Joint Venture estimates that more than £8m has already been spent directly within the local economy.

And more than 50 full time positions have been provided to local people.

Work on the Third River Crossing in Great Yarmouth

Work on the Third River Crossing. - Credit: City College Norwich

Tony Mulholland, project director at BAM Farrans said: “The project continues to progress on time and within budget and we are extremely grateful to the local community for their continued patience and support.

"The new bridge will make a massive difference to people’s daily lives and benefits are already being felt through the creation of local jobs and many training and learning opportunities.”

The bridge itself will stand about seven metres tall and is being built in two halves in Belgium.

It will be floated over by barge and installing it will mean completely closing the river to traffic for 72 hours and timing the operation almost to the second.

The twin leaf bascule bridge will open in the middle to let taller river traffic through.

The idea of a tunnel under the River Yare was rejected, because it would have been more expensive.