The Tamar Bridge is a major road bridge at Saltash in southwest England, carrying traffic between Cornwall and Devon. Opened in 1961, it was originally constructed by the Cleveland Bridge & Engineering Company. At this time, with a main span of 335m and two side spans of 114m, it became the longest suspension bridge in the UK.
In the late 1990s Cleveland Bridge were also awarded the contract to strengthen and widen the bridge, with Dorman Long providing construction methodology. The bridge became the world’s first suspension bridge to be widened from 3 lanes to 5 lanes by the addition of one lane cantilevers on either side of the existing deck. Major strengthening and replacement works were also carried out on the structure with the existing concrete deck replaced with a lightweight steel deck, steel plating being added to the truss systems and the addition of eighteen new stay cables to the suspended spans.
The Tamar bridge became the first bridge in the world to remain open to traffic throughout this strengthening and widening process, with the upgrade complete in 2001.