LIKE A BRIDGE OVER TRIBUTARY WATERS

As part of the Prologis Intermodal Rail Freight Terminal project at DIRFT III in Northamptonshire, Winvic is constructing one bridleway and two railway bridges, which traverse the Clifton Brook Tributary, the busy A5 and the new rail line. On schemes like this and SLPEMG, where bridge construction also took place, Winvic’s approach is to work with all stakeholders from very early in the process, meeting distinct needs through consistent, frequent and honest dialogue.

One of the two newly built structures at SLPEMG – an integral 45-degree road skew bridge – was not just uncommon, but Highways England specified unusual and challenging engineering parameters, and was the first of its kind on the HE network. The unique bridge comprised sixty 900mm piles at 20m depth, utilised a special blend of backfill to meet distinctive performance criteria – a 38-degree angle of repose – and increased steel was used to reinforce the walls. We prioritised the unusual engineering requirements on this occasion as the construction programme didn’t immediately affect vehicles on the network. However, sometimes design decisions develop from other areas, like at DIRFT III where mitigating disruption for road users, wildlife, cyclists and pedestrians has been high on our agenda.

We designed the Clifton Brook Tributary bridging structure solution with the Environment Agency’s (EA) input to give wildlife unobstructed access to sensitive ecological areas, to ensure habitats were minimally disturbed during construction and to maintain the utmost water quality. We have opted to use the Matiere System, so the 45m long pre-cast arch structure can be erected in a short, safe and uninterrupted time frame. Similarly, to minimise inconvenience to highways users and provide a safer construction environment, we have taken a forward-thinking approach to traffic management for the bridge crossing the A5 and have worked closely with HE. We will be installing a permanent, rather than the usual temporary restraint barrier system on the A5 and will lift the fully integral, single span (30.45m effective span) prestressed concrete structure over the highway in just a few hours to limit the night time road closure.

Clifton Brook Tributary

We designed the Clifton Brook Tributary bridging structure solution with the Environment Agency’s (EA) input to give wildlife unobstructed access to sensitive ecological areas, to ensure habitats were minimally disturbed during construction and to maintain the utmost water quality.

RAIL TERMINAL SCHEMES IN NUMBERS

Project: SLPEMG Cost: £67 million (total C&I) Complete: March 2020 Site area: 700-acre site, 50-acre Strategic Rail Freight Interchange (SRFI), 409,000 sq ft terminal slab Earthworks: 5 million m3 earthwork fill executed and cut up to 25m below the existing level Rail length: 7km track Siding: 3-track, 800m siding

Project: DIRFT III Cost: £29 million Complete: Summer 2021 Site area: 850-acre site, 86-acre intermodal rail freight terminal (IRFT), 850,348 sq ft terminal slab Earthworks: Re-engineered plateaux with 60,000m2 of cut and fill works and 40,000m3 of sub-base Rail length: 9km track Siding: 5-track, 800m siding with one of the UK’s few rail traversers

Rob Cook, Civils and Infrastructure Director


“We are thrilled that Prologis recognised our experience in the construction of rail freight terminals as well as our commitment to positive and productive liaison with key stakeholders like HE and the EA. Not only is the plot between the M1 and A5 vast – totalling 344 hectares – but many elements of the scheme are complex and require specialist knowledge; from the diversion of and care for the local tributary and its wildlife to constructing adjacent to a live and busy highway.”

Giles Taylor, Senior Design Manager


“The scheme, like any multifaceted one, has demanded expert levels of communication, planning and skill, which our team has in abundance due to previously delivering similar, vast rail freight schemes like SEGRO Logistics Park East Midlands Gateway. There are seven or eight key elements to the DIRFT III project and while none may immediately stand out on paper as unique, the underlying engineering complexities are certainly of note. For example, the engineering principles utilised for each bridge can generally be viewed as conventional for an integral bridge, but we have maximised the utilisation of each aspect of the design wherever possible.”

I CONTACT US

Winvic Construction Ltd Brampton House, 19 Tenter Road, Moulton Park, Northampton NN3 6PZ

To discuss an upcoming project or requirements for any scheme please contact Danny Cross or Alice Skelton in our Business Development team on 01604 678 960 or at dannycross@winvic.co.uk / aliceskelton@winvic.co.uk

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