'Extraordinary piece of work' of 157 pilings to see Park Road open to traffic in December
More than 150 pilings will be used to deal with subsidence problems which forced Park Road between Brighouse and Elland to close – but it is hoped the route can open to traffic in December.
A landslip following the February 2020 floods in Calderdale closed Park Road, Elland, one of the main routes linking Brighouse to the rest of the borough.
Calderdale Council Cabinet member for Regeneration and Strategy Coun Jane Scullion (Lab, Luddenden Foot) said engineering solutions to make the road and hillside safe were “an extraordinary piece of work.”
A member of the public asked at full council’s public question time when the route would be opened again as problems resulting from its closure include traffic “rat-running” through Siddal, Halifax, and Southowram to get to Brighouse on a route unsuitable for the volumes of traffic involved.
The questioner said the council had appointed a specialist contractor after receiving £1.8 million from the Government’s Better Building Fund and said it would be re-opened by December 2021.
“Please can I have a clear answer on when repairs are due to be completed and Park Road fully re-opened, and what plans are in place to really relieve congestion in the meantime through Siddal and Southowram?” she said.
Coun Scullion said: “We are hopeful that the work can be substantially completed in December, but this is entirely weather-dependent.”
She said she had visited the project last week.
“It is an extraordinary piece of work.
“In parts the road is slipping right down into the water, we’ve got mountaineers and builders roped up, climbing up, an extraordinary amount of piling.
“So in order to stabilise the whole hillside piling works are ongoing.
“In total we will need 157 piles and they will need to be installed to completely stabilise the hillside.
“We don’t want to do a job in which we do part of it and the road has to be closed again,” she said.
Coun Scullion said that once piles are installed reconstruction of the road can start.
“Engineers tell me they want to have the road open on one side and under traffic management so that cars can proceed along there before the final completion of work,” she said.
In tandem to this, a solution had been identified for problems at the other end of the road to stabilise movement there without a full road closure, again using traffic management, said Coun Scullion.
When these works, and work ongoing on the A629, were completed, the council anticipated most of the traffic rat-running will return to main routes, said Coun Scullion.
“I am really very sorry for the pressure the residents in those areas have been under. It is not nice.
“It’s not good for congestion, it’s not good for journey time, it’s not good for air quality, but we really are trying our best in this major civil engineering project to get it complete as soon as we can,” she said.