Are London’s Bridges falling down?
That was the question posed to the team this week by BBC News reporter Luke Hanrahan.
Luke got in touch to ask us to lend our expertise on all things concrete repair as we joined him to take a closer look at the current state of the Brent Cross Flyover.
Built in 1965, this is a structure that is rarely out of the news, with weight restrictions imposed late last year after it was found to be in a worse condition than originally thought.
Indeed, in an exclusive with New Civil Engineer back in October 2022, it was revealed that TFL has earmarked £215.2M for design and construction of existing road bridges between 2023 and 2028.
We joined the camera crew on the bridge where we deployed our concrete scanning equipment to give a more accurate view of the state of the bridge and to assess any defects, effectively determining the “life expectancy” of the bridge. The results were worrying, to say the least.
We discovered a lot of exposed reinforcement that should have been exposed years ago. As we headed underneath the bridge, we discovered very low levels of concrete cover which will lead to further exposure of the reinforcements. Along with the exposed steel, we even found bits of concrete flaking off as we filmed.
TFL stressed that they take safety seriously and are hoping to submit a business case later this year to secure funding for the project. It must be remembered that concrete does not last forever and concrete delamination is a major issue.
So are London’s bridges falling down? Ultimately, there’s no concrete answer, just more questions.
Do let us know us if we can help you with some of them.
Contact Structural Repairs for any concrete scanning or concrete delamination repair works.