Pedestrian tunnels reopen after six years of work

The historic Tyne Pedestrian and Cyclist Tunnels have re-opened after a refurbishment that ended up lasting six years.

By David Sedgwick
Monday, 05 August, 2019, 16:19
Stuart Turnbull, project manager for Tyne Pedestrian and Cyclist Tunnels

The tunnels – which reopened at a special ceremony on Wednesday – are now open between 6am and 8pm, seven days a week until they become fully operational in September, with the Night Service continuing for shift workers.

The Grade-II listed structure closed for refurbishment in May 2013 and only work on the installation of two inclined lifts remains.

As a result, the public must access and leave the tunnels via the vertical lifts and are advised they can only hold two or three people with bicycles at a time.

Project Manager Stuart Turnbull said: “It’s a relief to have the tunnels reopen after so many false dawns.

“We thank the public for their patience during what has been a challenging time for everyone involved.

All the works, apart from the completion of the installation of the new inclined lifts which will replace two of the old escalators, are finished.

“Rather than keep the public waiting until the inclined lifts are operational, which we expect to be in mid to late September, we decided to open as early as possible given the long delay on the project and the high levels of anticipation amongst the public.

“We know that many people will want to come down and see the tunnels.

“Given the restrictions in place, we’d ask that those coming purely out of curiosity to avoid peak commuter times.”