Lowood Bridge, east of Tweedbank, is open again following a £640,000 revamp.
It reopened today, June 15, three days ahead of schedule.
The 250-year-old crossing, carrying the B6374 road over the River Tweed to link Galashiels and Melrose, was closed for 20 weeks at the end of January for major repairs and strengthening works.
Despite beginning during the most extreme winter weather seen in the region for years, the bridge, a grade-B listed structure, was ready ahead of the start of Melrose Festival Week, though the event’s organisers had already decided to re-route its main rideout just in case it was still impassable.
Extensive masonry repairs have been carried out, requiring scaffolding for several weeks, and resurfacing of the road on and around the bridge has also been undertaken, as well as its traffic light system being upgraded.
The completion of the works, all done by Borders contractors, mean that the 26-tonne weight limit in force since March 2017 is now lifted.
Bus services that go via the bridge will resume using it tomorrow, June 16.
Scottish Borders Council’s executive member for roads and infrastructure, Selkirkshire councillor Gordon Edgar, said: “We firstly need to thank local residents, businesses and commuters for their patience during the closure of Lowood Bridge.
“We knew this closure would cause disruption locally over an extended period of time, but the project team and the local contractors have worked very hard to ensure the project finished ahead of schedule despite the heavy snow we had in February and March.
“The council is aware of the importance of Lowood Bridge, which is why it carried out these works as part of a programme of bridge repairs across the Borders to maintain the structure for many years to come.”