We've embarked on a £500,000 engineering project to replace the gas main in Fochabers Bridge
02 April 2019
An aerial view of Fochabers Bridge crossing the River Spey
We're partway through an engineering project to upgrade the gas network in Fochabers.
We’re investing £500,000 to replace an old, metal gas main, which runs alongside Fochabers Bridge, with a combination of new metal and plastic pipe to ensure a safe and reliable gas supply for many years to come.
Fochabers is situated on the A96, between Inverness and Aberdeen. Where the road crosses the River Spey, there are two bridges – the original bridge used by pedestrians and a newer bridge for vehicles. Our old gas main, which is being replaced, is fixed to the side of the pedestrian bridge.
Following careful planning with the local authorities, our engineers are partway through a highly complex engineering challenge to replace all 153m of our old 12 inch steel gas main. In addition, the engineers will replace over 100m of cast iron pipe which is buried below ground on either side of the bridge.
SGN Project Manager Iain Stuart said: “We’re using a new six inch steel gas main to replace the 12 inch cast iron gas main which runs along the pedestrian bridge. Our new main is being expertly welded to the underside of the bridge right now. We’ve already replaced the gas main on either side of the bridge with new plastic PE pipe which has a minimum lifespan of 80 years. At the end of the project, which we hope will be completed in June this year, we’ll remove the old gas main from the pedestrian bridge.
A view alongside the pedestrian bridge. We're replacing the old 12" steel gas main with a smaller six inch steel pipe (centre)
“Throughout the project, we’ve been liaising very closely with the local authorities and stakeholders including The Moray Council Ranger Service, the trunk road authority BEAR Scotland, the Scottish Environment Protection Agency (SEPA), The Spey Fisheries Board and local land owners. We want to ensure the impact of our work on residents, local businesses and the local wildlife is minimised as much as possible.
“The new plastic pipe has a minimum lifespan of 80 years. This means once the work has been completed, Fochabers’ homes and businesses will enjoy the benefits of a continued safe and reliable gas supply for many years to come.”
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