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Consultants File: Global projects compendium 2009

NCE’s global projects compendium is a selection of projects delivered by UK based consultants that took shape throughout the world last year. Some big, some small, all demonstrate excellence in civil engineering

Amey: Cooling Towers Demolition: M1 Tinsley Viaduct structural assessment

Structural assessment of M1 Tinsley Viaduct throughout demolition programme of two iconic cooling towers - just 10 m from motorway. Amey conducted the pre-demolition structural assessment consultancy on behalf of the Highways Agency; as well as the strategy preparation and execution for both pre and post demolition load and structure response monitoring - including inspection work. This was not only fundamental to the overall demolition strategy, but also allowed the viaduct to be safely re-opened to traffic three hours earlier than scheduled.

Arup: Stonecutters Bridge

Stonecutters Bridge is a cable-stayed dual three lane road bridge that forms the centre-piece of new Route 8 expressway from Shatin to West Tsing Yi Island, Hong Kong. Arup provided full civil, structural, mechanical, electrical, geotechnical, traffic, wind, marine and durability detailed engineering design and construction. Stonecutters Bridge will be the world’s second longest cable-stayed span. Design/construction challenges included: very long cable-stayed span, typhoon winds, large shipping traffic, resistance to ship impact, work at height, geometry control issues.


Atkins: London 2012 Olympic Park and site wide infrastructure

Atkins is engineering consultant for the design of aspects of the London 2012 Olympic Park and site wide infrastructure, alongside a team of other Olympic Delivery Authority contractors. Having been appointed in December 2005, Atkins has been working with partners to deliver a range of services including aspects of the clearing and cleaning of the site, infrastructure such as roads, bridges and utilities and environmental and ecological support. Atkins has been working on the project since December 2005 and expects to finish during 2010 as the enabling works and infrastructure are completed.

Grontmij: M9 spur extension / A90 upgrading project, Edinburgh

This scheme provides the missing link in south-east Scotland’s trunk road network, which has successfully removed traffic congestion on the nearby A8000 route bringing environmental benefits to the communities of Kirkliston and South Queensferry. A section of the scheme was constructed over an area of abandoned mine workings that were consolidated as an advanced contract by the employer. The scheme also crossed a major BP oil export pipeline that carries approximately 25% of the UK’s daily oil exports. Cutting edge road pavement materials were used in the design and colliery spoil and recycled demolition waste was used in the construction of the scheme. On-line carriageway widening works took place on the busy southern approach to the Forth Road bridge whilst maintaining the heavy traffic flows on this key Scottish transport artery.

Grontmij was contractor’s designer for the detailed design and construction supervision of 4.5km of new motorway and existing dual carriageway widening including four new principal highway structures. Grontmij subsequently removed the toll booths at the southern bridgehead of the Forth Road bridge and replaced them with an amended road layout and electronic traffic management system. This included variable messaging signs, traffic signals and associated computer installation controller.

Gwynedd: A470 Blaenau Ffestiniog - Cancoed Improvement

A 4km on-line improvement to a narrow, steep section of trunk road, half of which is within the Snowdonia National Park. Fitting the new road within the historic landscape of slate tips and five listed buildings, while also crossing  a river and two protected former railway lines, requiring an extensive temporary diversion. Gwynedd was employer’s agent for the £12.5M scheme.

Gwynedd: Ysgol Cae Top, Bangor

A new primary school for 200 children on a greenfield site. Overcoming objections from local residents to development of the site was the biggets challenge. Innovations include solar panels, geothermal heating and rainwater harvesting. Gwynedd was project manager.

Interserve Consulting: Ascension Island building refurbishment for MoD

Refurbishment of MoD facilities at Ascension Islands military base, a strategically important, self-sufficient site from which the Joint Forces (Army, Navy and RAF) undertake military operations in the region. A strategically important military base, it was essential to enable continuity of business operations in a live environment throughout the project. Innovative approaches adopted included building in sustainability improvements to reduce energy consumption. Interserve Consulting undertook a number of consultancy services from project inception through construction to completion and post-implementation support: Project Management and Cost Management services, CDM co-ordination, management of contractor tender and selection process.

MWH: North Sitra Wastewater Treatment Works, Bahrain

Upgrade and expansion of Bahrain’s second largest wastewater treatment plant, providing health, environmental and aesthetic improvements to the area. The plant had to be built and brought on line, and the old plant decommissioned, whilst maintaining treatment. It involved MWH staff from the UK, Bahrain, the US and Australia. MWH was project manager and technical adviser on all phases, from initial concept design through detail design, procurement, construction and final commissioning.

Mott MacDonald: Palm Jumeirah Monorail, Dubai

Palm Jumeirah is a 5km2 artificial island complex, now with a dedicated monorail system. The Gulf’s first mass transit rail system is a landmark project in Dubai, setting the standard for future public transport projects in the UAE. The monorail is based on a design used widely in Japan. Mott MacDonald helped turnkey contractor Marubeni, which had previously built monorail systems to Japanese standards, to meet the European standards adopted by Dubai’s Roads & Transport Authority. While the construction technology is simple, the line has a snaking geometry. Great care was needed to ensure curves and joints were smooth. Mott MacDonald played a central role in helping client Nakheel manage the interfaces between construction of the monorail and the numerous road, building and marine projects under way simultaneously.

Mott MacDonald: Los Angeles International Airport (LAX) upgrade, US

LAX is being upgraded to accommodate the world’s largest aircraft, the Airbus A380 super jumbo. The airport currently has two stands used by the A380. In order to accommodate these aircraft, taxiways and hardstanding areas need greater load bearing capacity and turning circles have to be larger. Taxiway separations also need to be increased as wingspans are wider and gates for boarding and disembarkation need to match the sheer physical scale of the aircraft. More power, water and fuel services are required to prepare aircraft. And not least, all 550-850 passengers need to comfortably make the transition between the terminal building and plane. The upgrade involves major expansion of the existing terminal and creation of a remote multi-gate concourse to the west, connected to the central terminal area by an automated people mover. To accommodate the new buildings, aircraft hangars and service buildings will be demolished and relocated. New and relocated aircraft taxiways and aprons will be constructed. Baggage and utility tunnels will be excavated beneath existing terminal buildings and taxiways. All work must be carried out keeping two of the airport’s three crossfield taxiways operational at all times. Mott MacDonald’s US business Hatch Mott MacDonald is leading engineering design.

Mouchel: M42 Active Traffic Management

With the UK’s motorway network becoming increasingly congested, the Highways Agency and Mouchel translated the concept of Active Traffic Management into a safe, intuitive reality. The scheme uses Mandatory Variable Speed Limits to facilitate hard shoulder running to reduce congestion during peak periods and to provide effective, alternative incident management capability. As managing consultant and designer for the project, Mouchel worked in partnership with the Highways Agency’s dedicated ATM team to successfully implement this scheme.

Mouchel: Pevensey Bay Sea Defence PFI Project

The scheme protects 7,000 homes and businesses, and two important nature reserves, against permanent flooding in a 50km2 area around Pevensey Bay, East Sussex. It is the UK’s first PFI flood defence scheme. Protection comes from a 9km stretch of shingle bank, which absorbs wave energy and minimises hard engineering structures required to protect the hinterland. Mouchel provided design and site management services, provided as part of a consortium on behalf of the Environment Agency.

Parsons Brinckerhoff: Cambridgeshire Guided Busway

This 26km guided busway consists of two sections, running between St Ives and Cambridge, and the city centre to the Trumpington park & ride site on the M11, J11. It will be the world’s longest and fastest guided busway, providing the benefits of frequent, comfortable, high speed services, platformed stops, advance ticket purchase, CCTV, real-time passenger information and parking at less than half the construction costs of light rail. Parsons Brinckerhoff carried out detailed construction design of the guideway alignment, drainage system, earthworks, guideway structure, River Great Ouse viaduct, bus stations, street lighting, CCTV system, maintenance
tracks and two park & ride sites (1,000 & 700 spaces).

McGregor McMahon & Associates: New Aircraft carriers

The project entails forming a route for prefabricated ship sections to be transported in units weighing up to 1,000 tonnes between sites for storage and final fabrication. Buildings will need to be dismantled and re-built on the route, with strengthening, widening and  regrading of haul roads. McGregor McMahon & Associates’ role includes site investigation and testing, structural assessment of existing buildings, design of ground improvement works and design of haul roads and storage areas.

Flint & Neill: Fabian Way Bridge

A heavily skewed cable-stayed bridge carrying an express bus route over the A483 into Swansea forming part of the redevelopment of the old docklands area. The bridge incorporates a particularly interesting twisted array of back stays with a forward inclined mast. The bridge design was developed entirely around the principle of offsite prefabrication for minimal on site work. Flint & Neill was structural designer.

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