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You need a licence to construct a bridge over a road in Northern Ireland.

You also need to apply for planning permission separately.

How to apply

Download an application form from the NI Direct website or call Roads Service.

Roads Service
028 9025 3000
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You must give the following information:

  • your details
  • agents’ details, if applicable
  • solicitor details
  • location of the proposed work
  • purpose of the proposed work and brief details
  • start date and length of proposed work
  • your planning permission application number

You must submit 2 copies of a plan or drawing of the bridge with your application.


Department for Regional Development (DRD) conditions on your licence can include:

  • the removal or alteration of the bridge
  • required planning permission
  • minimum vertical and horizontal clearances
  • certification of adequacy from a chartered engineer in accordance with DRD’s Technical Approval Scheme
  • maintenance
  • use of the bridge
  • investigation of the existence of cables, pipes and equipment belonging to service authorities and provision for their protection where appropriate

If your works are complex you may also be required to:

  • provide and maintain adequate drainage
  • do any additional work or provide facilities deemed by DRD to be required in connection with the bridge, eg safety barriers or additional lighting
  • lodge a cash deposit with the DRD sufficient to cover DRD’s costs of carrying out additional necessary works
  • indemnify DRD against any claim in respect of injury, damage or loss arising from the existence of bridge over the road
  • erect the bridge within a specified time period

Additional conditions may be imposed depending in the individual project.

Fines and penalties

You may be fined up to £1,000 if you carry out works without permission from DRD.