Work to remove the bollards from underneath Gateshead's Millennium Bridge has been completed.
The last of the 16 vertical piles, driven 15 metres into the river bed, was extracted on Friday.
The grey protective booms were originally installed during construction of the Millennium Bridge in 2000, to ensure the bridge was protected against river vessels accidentally colliding with its superstructure.
However, recent assessments of river traffic suggest that the risk of collision is now so low that removing the piles would present little risk.
Councillor Mick Henry, Leader of Gateshead Council, said: “This is the first time that anyone has seen the Gateshead Millennium Bridge as its designer originally intended.
“Visitors have frequently commented on the way the bollards and booms under the bridge detract from its appearance, though we’ve always been committed to retaining them in the interests of river safety.
“But having reviewed the levels of river traffic using the Tyne, and established that their removal will not present a major risk, we took the bold decision to remove them.
"I think that will prove to have been a very popular decision."
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