Cork City Council is looking for suitable contractors to carry out repair work to Cork's iconic Shakey Bridge.
Pre-qualification submissions to identify suitable contractors for the repair of the most iconic river crossing in Cork city have been invited by City Hall.
Interested parties have until October 24 to make submissions for the upgrade of Daly's Bridge, known locally as the 'Shakey Bridge' due to its well-known wobble.
The bridge connects Sunday's Well with the Mardyke and Fitzgerald's Park. The cost of the repairs is not expected to exceed €1 million.
An inspection report by RPS consulting on the Shakey Bridge in 2016 noted significant corrosion to the iron latticework and health and safety concerns have repeatedly been raised about the crossing.
However, City Council secured the bridge with short-term safety works last year but the latest repairs will see parts of the 50.9-metre bridge dismantled so the deck can be taken off-site for grit blasting, repair and repainting before it is reinstated. The timber decking will also be fully replaced.
City Hall senior engineer Fergus Gleeson told the Evening Echo that City Hall is taking the utmost care in appointing a contractor who has a track record in dealing with historic structures.
“We expect the bridge to not cost more than €1m. It's at a two-stage procurement process. Because the bridge is a specific heritage structure and is technically quite challenging because it is a suspension bridge, we are pre-qualifying contractors and we will make a shortlist of contractors with specific experience of suspension, bridges, steel bridges and heritage steel structures and that is to make sure that we tender only to suitably qualified contractors.
“There is still a public consultation process ongoing. It's the Shakey Bridge and we want someone who is qualified. We are taking maximum care,” he added.
The works will also be the removal of vegetation, cleaning and graffiti removal, while the steel latticed deck and the original iron railings on the southern ferry boat quayside will also be taken down and repainted.
The palisade fencing and pedestrian railings will also be removed and replaced, while new public lighting will be installed at approaches to both the northern and southern entrances to the bridge as well as the bridge itself.
Cork City Council engineers said dismantling for repair off-site is considered best practice and has been undertaken successfully on a number of similar bridges across the rest of Europe.
Inclement weather conditions during the winter would also prevent this work being carried out on site, as would concerns around site personnel working at height for prolonged periods of time over the river.
The bridge was opened in 1927 and remains the only suspension bridge in Cork City.