Ilex, the urban regeneration company today announced the arrival of the 1057 tonne Forth Atlas barge at Lisahally Docks where it will assemble sections of the Peace Bridge before transporting them along the River Foyle.
The Forth Atlas barge (53 metres long) will make several journeys on the River Foyle carrying sections of the bridge over the next few days.
The third bridge across the River Foyle, the Peace Bridge has been given £13,343,476 from the European Union’s PEACE III Programme managed by the Special EU Programmes Body (SEUPB). The programme’s theme of Creating Shared Public Space aims to support large scale infrastructure developments that will tackle problems of separated communities by creating genuine new shared space or transforming contested space.
Pat Colgan, Chief Executive of the Special EU Programmes Body (SEUPB) said: “I am pleased to see that the creation of the Peace bridge is progressing well. The construction of the new bridge sections marks yet another key milestone in the development of a truly iconic project that will act as a catalyst for real and meaningful change. In creating a shared public space that can be used on a cross-community basis the bridge will encourage greater levels of long-term peace and reconciliation”.
Brenda Fraser, Ilex’s Director of Development welcomed the arrival of the Forth Atlas saying: “This is a really exciting time for the city when people can come along and see the bridge take shape. Over a number of days everyone will be able to see the Forth Atlas make its way up and down the Foyle and watch as it builds the deck of the Peace Bridge. For the last six months people have followed its construction online via the time lapse camera, now we can all watch first hand and witness history in the making”.
Philip Brown, Chief Engineer for Graham Construction explained: “This is a significant construction milestone for the Peace Bridge and is the culmination of many months planning and hard work, both on site during construction of the foundations and off site in the fabrication works. The project will now enter a new phase with the bridge masts and deck sections being assembled and welded together before the main cables and hangers are installed”.
The Peace Bridge is scheduled for completion in April 2011.
For further information contact Orla Newland, Ilex - 028 7126 9226 or 07920 886326. Press release and bridge images are downloadable on www.ilex-urc.com
NOTES TO EDITORS
Northern Ireland and the Border Region of Ireland will benefit from a seven-year €33 million PEACE programme made up of €225 million in additional funding from the European Union along with national contributions of €108 million.
The EU Programme for Peace and Reconciliation in Northern Ireland and the Border Region of Ireland, 2007 – 2013 (the PEACE III Programme) is a distinctive European Union Structural Funds Programme aimed at reinforcing progress towards a peaceful and stable society and promoting reconciliation. It will assist Northern Ireland and the Border Region of Ireland and specifically focus on reconciling communities and contributing towards a shared society.
It will deliver these priorities through measures which will:
- Build positive relations at the local level
- Acknowledge the past
- Create shared public spaces
- Develop key institutional capacity for a shared society
The programme carries forward key aspects of the previous PEACE Programmes (PEACE I and PEACE II) and has a continued and renewed emphasis on reconciliation. The PEACE III Programme continues the earlier programme’s cross-border focus on Ireland, North and South.
The purpose of the Creating Shared Public Space theme of the PEACE III programme is to tackle problems of separation of communities by creating genuine new shared space or transforming contested space. The focus is on large scale infrastructural developments that expand opportunities for common use, interaction and engagement, and economic development. It is hoped that this opportunity to interact will affect change in behavioural patterns in relation to shopping, working and socialising. €82 million has been allocated to this theme.
The Forth Atlas Barge
- Built in 1959 and modified in 2008
- Size 53m(l) x 21m (beam) x 2.55m (draft)
- Weight 1057 tonnes
- 230T pedestal crane up to 61m boom length
- 3 x 18 spudlegs
The Peace Bridge will physically and symbolically unite both sides of the River Foyle and is conceived as two distinct structural systems that work in harmony, a pair of identical curved suspension structures, each allied to opposing banks, in a fluid “S” shaped alignment. At the middle of the river both structural systems tangibly overlap, boldly interacting to create a single unified crossing – a structural handshake across the Foyle and an embrace in the centre of the river.
The Peace Bridge will measure 235 metres and will have a gradient of 1/50. Designed for pedestrians and cyclists, the bridge will run from behind Guildhall Square on to the former Parade Ground in the former Ebrington Barracks.