Bridge carrying regeneration hopes gets ready to ride high

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THE backbone of a landmark footbridge that could play a key role in the regeneration of the east bank of the River Hull will be lifted into place tomorrow.

A giant crane capable of lifting 1,200 tonnes is being readied to lift the spine over the river and connect it to a steel hub on the west bank, close to the city’s tidal barrier.

It is hoped the £7.5m bridge will be completed next month after more than a year of delays. Based on a concept by award-winning architects McDowell and Benedetti, it is expected to become a visitor attraction in its own right, featuring eye-catching lighting displays and opening to the sound of a waterfall.

It will look like a whale when viewed from the side, with a fin on the top and another two at the very tip that will enclose gates that shut when the bridge is about to move.

As well as being the first bridge of its kind in the UK to allow people to remain on it as it swings, a bistro will allow diners to tuck in while they enjoy the ride.

A Hull Council spokesman said: “While the development of the area has halted during the economic downturn there is still the ability to develop the area once the economy picks up and the provision of the bridge helps to future-proof the development potential of the land on the east bank.”