Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

Risk of Roads That Crumble

Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

Risk of Roads That Crumble

Article excerpt

Roads do not last for ever ( road bridges even less so. Pile on far more traffic than their designers predicted ( and far heavier lorries ( and there can only be one outcome.

But we take roads for granted. We fight for years over the route they will take, the traffic they will attract and the number of lanes they will have.

Once the ceremonial ribbon has been cut, however, we cannot imagine life without them.

Commuters and other motorists who use the Coast Road from North Shields into Newcastle are about to learn not to take the stuff beneath their tyres for granted.

The concrete of at least one of the road's bridges is giving way. A lengthy ( and expensive ( replacement programme beckons and the 52,000 drivers who use the Coast Road daily face a miserable few months while it is completed.

There is, of course, no alternative. We use cars more and more and we rely on them completely.

No region in the country has seen a greater increase in the number of two-car families than the North-East has over the past decade and a half. …

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