Bristol Metropolis Council misses ‘definitive’ deadline for reopening Chocolate Path as a result of there was ‘no-one to color the fence’8736559

A path alongside the river within the centre of Bristol that closed practically six years in the past will stay shut for one more week – after contractors missed the ‘definitive’ deadline introduced by the council final month.

The Chocolate Path on the north facet of the New Minimize River Avon was imagined to open this morning (Monday, September 4), however there was no-one obtainable to color the fence, so it’ll stay closed this week and reopen lastly on Friday.

Nevertheless Cumberland Highway, which the Chocolate Path runs alongside, has reopened as deliberate in the present day – that means motorists and cyclists will have the ability to journey unhindered alongside the highway itself. The highway reopened at about 11am, throughout a stay Bristol Stay broadcast on Fb.

Learn subsequent: Wapping Wharf to throw enormous celebration when Gaol Ferry Bridge lastly reopens

Bristol Metropolis Council’s transport and roads boss, Cllr Don Alexander, welcomed the reopening of Cumberland Highway. “It’s nice information that work to stabilise Cumberland Highway will allow it to reopen in the present day,” he mentioned. “This has been a significant engineering mission that has offered us with numerous challenges alongside the best way.

“I do know many individuals are trying ahead to utilizing the Chocolate Path once more and can be ready to take action once more on Friday, September 8, once we can even be reopening Gaol Ferry Bridge at 5pm.

“It is going to be improbable to have each these common routes in use once more and to see individuals strolling and biking over them as soon as extra. It exhibits our continued funding in our harbourside infrastructure and our dedication to get advanced initiatives finished,” he added.

The Chocolate Path and the Harbourside Railway first closed at this spot west of Vauxhall Bridge again in December 2017, when the trail began breaking apart and there have been considerations the embankment was unstable. Plans had been drawn as much as spend £5 million to repair the embankment, however nothing was really finished throughout 2018 and 2019, and your complete embankment collapsed into the river in early 2020, taking the trail, the railway and half the highway with it alongside an 80-metre part.

It was one other few months earlier than a mission to rebuild the embankment and reinstate the trail, the railway and the highway started – by now the mission was estimated to price £11 million – but it surely has been hit by delays and bulletins of completion dates which have been missed. Final 12 months, the council mentioned it could it could be fastened and open by February 2023, however in January the council introduced that deadline could be missed, and as a substitute set a deadline for Could.

On the finish of Could, the council introduced it could be opened on the finish of July, and when July turned to August, a ‘definitive date’ of September 4, was introduced.

A council spokesperson described this newest delay – albeit of solely 5 days – as a ‘change in date’. “There are some remaining repairs to be made on the Chocolate Path, though it’ll reopen from Friday, September 8, with timings to be confirmed subsequent week,” he mentioned. “The change in date is because of a mixture of things together with employees shortages to hold out the specialist fencing work and unavoidable delays to portray the railings as a result of latest moist climate.

Ian Davies, the contracts supervisor at Griffiths, the agency doing the work, added: “The reasoning behind the slip is a mixture of our personal short-term useful resource availability and our fencing sub-contractors together with the climate of late as they haven’t been in a position to perform the precise portray of the fencing.”

Cumberland Highway absolutely reopen to vehicles, buses, bikes and e-scooters. Immediately can be imagined to be the primary day of operation of a brand new ‘bus gate’, which has been put in up to now month additional east alongside the highway, simply previous the turning for the SS Nice Britain. Meaning solely buses, taxis, bikes and e-scooters can proceed east alongside the highway to Bedminster Bridge – and personal automobile drivers can be fined if they fight it.

“The bus gate has been put in to the east of Fuel Ferry Highway, so vehicles can journey eastbound on Cumberland Highway up thus far, which additionally signifies that the SS Nice Britain can nonetheless be accessed from each instructions,” mentioned a council spokesperson. “Any unauthorised automobile travels that by the bus gate will obtain a penalty cost discover. All autos will nonetheless have the ability to drive westbound alongside Cumberland Highway.”

The brand new date for the reopening of the Chocolate Path – the sixth introduced by Bristol Metropolis Council – coincides with the day introduced for the reopening of Gaol Ferry Bridge, additional east alongside the New Minimize, which has been closed for repairs for greater than a 12 months. That’s scheduled to reopen at 5pm on Friday this week, and the companies in Wapping Wharf are throwing a celebration to mark the event.