|Location Map ( geo)|
The Creagan Bridge was originally built in 1903 as a Railway bridge, carrying the Ballachulish Branch of the Callander and Oban Railway. The line was largely financed and operated by the Caledonian Railway, who subsequently absorbed the C&O. It was originally intended to be the southern part of an Oban - Inverness line, but bickering between the 3 companies operating along the route led to most of the project being abandoned.
Following closure of the railway in March 1966, the bridge lay semi-derelict for over 30 years before the project to convert it for road use got under way. The strutcure had to be completely rebuilt to take a road, with the old steel truss deck removed, the piers reduced in height and then a new steel girder and concrete deck installed over the top. The roads at either end were also realigned and roundabouts installed to connect the new road over the bridge with the old road around the loch. On the south shore, the old road still passes under the bridge, whilst on the north shore the old line of the road can be followed in part in the trees to the north of the roundabout, but rock blasting to change the levels has destroyed part of it.
The new bridge was opened in c2001, cutting off a five mile stretch of the old A828 road around the head of Loch Creran. One of the main drivers behind the project was the problems of the old road flooding, which was managed by a series of warning signs and a diversion along a private drive past a house. Obviously this was hardly a suitable solution for a trunk road!
The old road is still fully open, although the majority of traffic uses the northern section. This provides the quicker route from the settlements in Glen Creran to the A828, whilst the southern section only passes a couple of properties.