Nexus, the public body which owns and manages the Tyne and Wear Metro is to carry out an essential programme of track modernisation work on its line in South Tyneside.
This is vital modernisation work which needs to go ahead. Strict controls will be in place for the workforce to carry out this project during the ongoing lockdown due to the coronavirus pandemic. An assessment has taken place so that work can continue with two metre distance between workers.
This work forms part of the larger £8m project led by Nexus to renew Metro’s track and track-bed between Gateshead Stadium and South Shields, which began last year.
A 250 metre stretch of track-bed will be replaced on the Crossgate viaduct – a key gateway into South Shields town centre. This will involve 450 tonnes of new ballast and 650 new sleepers.
The work, which forms part of the Metro: all change modernisation programme, will happen during a four-day major line closure, meaning that no Metro services will operate between Hebburn and South Shields - Thursday April 16 to Sunday April 19.
Chief Operating Officer at Nexus, Martin Kearney, said: “The region needs Metro more than ever now, and in in the future, as we get through this public health crisis.
“Delivering this major engineering project now, under carefully managed and safe conditions, means that Metro will be fighting fit as the economy recovers. We have worked in detail with our contractor to make sure we are both happy this project can be carried out with respect to social distancing.”
When the line closure is in place a replacement bus service, number 900, will be in operation between Hebburn and South Shields transport interchange, calling at or near all stations on the affected route.
People should only travel if they are a key worker or if the journey is essential.