McLaughlin & Harvey is delighted to be involved in the £6 million restoration of the Gobbins Coastal Path.
Works will include the installation of approximately one kilometre of new coastal path, new hand railings, and fifteen new bridge structures; including two bridges designed to replicate the famous tubular hoop bridge and suspension bridge which were first designed in 1902.
The original Gobbins Coastal Path was designed by Berkley Dean Wise for the Belfast and Northern Counties Railway Company as a commercial venture to attract passengers to use their rail link between Belfast and Whitehead, and in its day was more popular than the Giant’s Causeway.
The half mile path, which was closed to the public in 1954, was linked by a series of spectacular metal bridges. Today the attraction is in a state of disrepair, with many of the original metalwork structures and rails damaged or collapsed because of rust and the action of the sea.
The project has been phased to accommodate the nature of the site, which is listed as an Area of Special Scientific Interest (ASSI), and sensitivity of working in and around breeding cliff top birds.
The 30 week scheme will be managed by Contracts Manager Adrian Pollock and Project Manager Brian Ballantine, and preparation works are planned to commence in early 2014.
McLaughlin & Harvey Civil Engineer Trevor Spence commented, “Gobbins path will be an excellent tourist attraction for Northern Ireland. We are both proud and excited to be playing a key role in restoring such as iconic structure back into use.”
The scheme will open Summer 2014, and will provide guided ‘experience tours’ which will explore the history and heritage of the site, and the surrounding flora, fauna and geological features.