Decision details

Leader's Urgent Decision - Hammersmith Bridge Options Report

Decision Maker: Leader of the Council

Decision status: Recommendations Approved

Is Key decision?: Yes

Is subject to call in?: Yes


1.1.        After extensive investigations Hammersmith Bridge has been found to need considerable refurbishment. LBHF working with TfL have completed a feasibility report on the requirements needed to refurbish the bridge. From that report a few options for Hammersmith Bridge refurbishment have been developed.


1.2.         This report recommends the progression of one option out of three and Transport for London (TfL) have committed funding for this work including the cost of insurance for the works. The funding committed is £25 million.


1.3.         The Council will be required to purchase additional insurance for some advanced works on the pedestals that will significantly reduce the refurbishment works programme. The cost of this will be reimbursed as part of the £25m indicated above, however as the Council will be the principal insured party, this report is seeking approval to place the insurance contract. This report will be one of a series of reports as the works progresses.



The Leader is recommended to approve:


1.1.         The option recommended as a result of the feasibility report which is to restore Hammersmith Bridge to its previous level of operation of allowing motor traffic up to 7.5 tonnes and two single decker buses in each direction (and future proofed for heavier electric buses) subject to funds being made available to carry out the works.


1.2.         That the Council enter into an agreement with TfL for it to carry out preliminary works on all four pedestals to investigate micro cracks found and for the development of a concept design for more major works.


1.3.         A waiver of the provisions of Contract Standing Order 10 (pursuant to CSO 3) concerning the usual tendering requirements for services contracts, in relation to the requirement to purchase specialist construction insurance for the preliminary works, on the grounds that the nature of the services to be provided have been investigated and demonstrated to be such that a departure from CSO 10 is justifiable.


1.4.         The award of contracts for the purchase of specialist construction insurance contracts for the preliminary works by means of an Owner Controlled Insurance Programme (OCIP) placed by the Council’s insurance brokers, Marsh JLT Specialty Ltd, on the Council’s behalf, at a total cost £139,206.48



1.5.         A waiver of the usual requirements of contract standing order 19.5.1 (pursuant to CSO3) for contracts worth in excess of £100,000 to be sealed as a deed, to enable the contracts referred to in the previous recommendation to be entered into by the issue of a policy document in accordance with standard industry practice, on the grounds that this is in the overall interest of the Council.


Reasons for the decision:

From the three options assessed within the body of the report, the most cost    effective and  timely outcome is the option to restore the bridge to its previous level of operation. Approving the advanced works will reduce the time on either of the options by several months.


The Council must enter into an associated agreement with TfL and obtain insurance cover for the advanced pedestal works.


Alternative options considered:

1.1.        Option A:Walking and cycling bridge would give the shortest amount of design and construction time with a lower cost. However this would still take approximately 2 years because the bridge faults, including the micro-cracks in the pedestals, would need to be dealt with alongside refurbishment works.



·                Lowest cost solution

·                Shortest programme 2 years

·                Positively contributes to Mayor’s Active Travel strategy and Improves cycling safety

·                Air quality benefits



·                Requires declassification of ‘A’ Road and public consultation

·                Wider traffic disruption

·                Reduces resilience of road network by removing a vehicular       Thames crossing

·                Increased bus operation costs and reduces TfL revenue


1.2.        Option B:Restoration to previous level of operation and previous status which is the middle range of costs and time required to complete the works.



·                Restores operation of bridge to previous levels of motor vehicles

·                Restores public transport benefits and connectivity

·                Will allow electric buses to use bridge

·                Reduces traffic disruption

·                Restores resilience to road network

·                Improve air quality with electric buses



·                Higher costs than Option B- affordability

·                Programme in excess of 3 years

·                No segregation for cyclists

·                Requires measures to control traffic restrictions and buses


1.3.        Option C: Enhanced bus usage - motor traffic up to 7.5 tonnes and increased single decker buses (and with the flexibility to introduce double decker buses). This would require the highest costs and works time for the need to enhance the foundations as well as refurbish the bridge.



·                Restores operation of bridge to previous levels of motor vehicles

·                Restores and enhances bus service, potentially including double                deckers

·                Future-proofs bridge though more substantive structural works

·                No traffic control measures required

·                Reduces traffic disruption

·                Restores resilience to road network



·                Affordability – highest cost solution

·                Longest programme 5 years +

·                No segregation for cyclists

·                High engineering risks, e.g. foundations and cables

·                New structural elements will impact on historical and architectural                      features



Urgent item?: Yes

Publication date: 08/11/2019

Date of decision: 07/11/2019

Effective from: 13/11/2019

Accompanying Documents: