M1 in Bedfordshire faces 16-hours closure for bridge removal
The M1 in Bedfordshire is being closed for 16 hours when an old 1,400 tonne bridge at Junction 12 is demolished, the Highways Agency has announced.
The road will be closed both ways between J11 and J13 overnight on 30 June, with long diversions in place.
Northbound drivers will use the A5 to Milton Keynes, while southbound motorists will be diverted to the A1 and M25.
The bridge is being knocked down under improvement works from J10 to J13 .
The concrete and steel bridge, which is 17m wide and 41m long, was designed by Sir Owen Williams and Partners and built in 1959.
It carried the old A5120 over the M1 but has not been used since a new bridge opened in May.
The closure, scheduled from 20:00 BST on 30 June to 12:00 BST on 1 July, will see it removed using hydraulic breakers.
The Highways Agency has advised that people allow up to an hour for the southbound diversion and 25 minutes northbound.
Project manager Lynne Stinson said removing the bridge would be "a big engineering feat" and the only way to remove it safely and quickly was to close the motorway.
"To keep [disruption] to a minimum we have timed the works for a 16-hour period at the weekend when traffic flow is at its lowest," she said.
"We have avoided large spectator events such as the F1 Grand Pix at Silverstone, the [Olympics] and events related to the Games."