The original six month timetable has been drastically reduced. The council’s contractors will be working extended hours to get the £1.5m of repairs completed as quickly as possible.
The vast majority of the works will now be carried out during the school summer holidays when traffic levels are at their lightest. This timetable should also ensure that the bridge will reopen in plenty of time for businesses to take advantage of the busy festive shopping period.
While the works are ongoing pedestrians will still be able to cross the bridge, as will cyclists, although they will need to dismount.
Buses will operate a shuttle service from both ends of the bridge. This means that passengers will need to cross it on foot to continue their journeys.
To achieve a faster turnaround it has been agreed that the permitted hours of working will be as follows:
6am to midnight Monday to Friday
10am to 4pm at weekends
However the contractor has been told to schedule the repairs so that no excessively noisy works are carried out at unreasonable times.
The works schedule has been arranged in close consultation with Transport for London, neighbouring highway authorities, local amenity groups, business representatives and other partners to ensure a high level of co-ordination with other major roadworks in south and west London.
The programme has also been drawn up to avoid impacting on the Wimbledon tennis championships, while the works have been scheduled so that August’s Ride London cycle event, which attracts thousands of professional and amateur bike riders, can still be accommodated.
Wandsworth Council leader Ravi Govindia said: “These works are absolutely vital to protect the internal fabric of the bridge and ensure it lasts another 100 years. Our primary concern is to get this important job done efficiently and quickly so that there is the least amount of disruption to residents, businesses and the wider travelling public.
“Unfortunately a repair job on this scale to an important river crossing means that some degree of disruption is unavoidable, and we are of course very sorry for the inconvenience it will cause, but we have worked very hard to keep this to the absolute minimum.
“And we are giving people as much advance warning as we can so that they have plenty of time to plan alternative routes or look at using other forms of transport to get across the river.”