22 November 2023

Long term traffic closure for Aboyne Bridge as council conducts further investigations

Aboyne Bridge is to remain closed to traffic for the foreseeable future after an invasive examination of the structure revealed significant concerns over its condition.

The Category B-listed bridge, which carries the B968 Bridgeview Road over the River Dee, could be closed for more than 18 months to allow for further investigations to take place, for decisions to be made on the way forward, and for any associated legal, planning, and construction matters to be progressed.

Following a recent intrusive structural investigation of the top deck of the main span of the 84-year-old bridge, it has been confirmed that the reinforced concrete deck is now at the end of its life and is no longer suitable for motorised traffic.

The diversion for vehicles is via Dinnet Bridge (B9158 road), the next road bridge upstream from Aboyne, while the bridge can continue to be used by pedestrians, cyclists and other non-motorised traffic for the time being.

Further detailed investigations are now under way to determine whether there are any wider structural issues and if repair is feasible.

Aberdeenshire Council’s Head of Roads & Infrastructure, Philip McKay, explained: “The unusual design of the bridge meant that we had to arrange to cut into the chambers beneath the deck to get a full picture of the wear and tear on the structure. What that showed is that the concrete has deteriorated far more than is visible on the surface.

“Unfortunately, given the age, size, and complexity of the bridge there is no quick or easy solution that would allow us to restore access to traffic. While the closure is indeed lengthy, it will allow us to fully assess whether repair is possible and for decisions to be made on the way forward.

“We appreciate this is a significant inconvenience for users of the route and we apologise for the disruption. We will provide further updates as our investigations continue.”