London - civil engineering awards

Women in Engineering, the Crossrail project

London Civil Engineering Awards 2015
The premier showcase for engineering excellence in the capital

The annual ICE London Civil Engineering Awards, in association with Topcon, celebrates outstanding engineering achievement in the capital. Civil engineering is about creating, improving and protecting the world in which we live. Join us in voting for your favourite project and seeing which projects were nominated for the awards.

Awards Ceremony

Join us at our flagship event for the year, for drinks, networking and celebration in the magnificent setting of the Great Hall, One Great George Street, where the award winners will be announced to an audience of more than 300 industry leaders.

ICE President David Balmforth and BBC London reporter Alice Bhandhukravi will host the ceremony and announce the winners.

Thursday 14th May, 18:30pm at One Great George Street, London. Book your place today.

Shortlist

Seventeen projects below where shortlisted by our judges and one project gets the chance to win the ICE London Evening Standard People's Choice Award. The votes are in and the winner will be announced on the 14th May along with the winners of the ICE London Civil Engineering Awards.

  • Believe in Better building

    Believe in Better building
      • Principal Architecture and Engineers: Arup Associates
      • Client: Sky

      The Believe in Better Building is the first UK multi-story Massivhotz commercial building and was designed and constructed in less than one year. It is a super-flexible facility which is of exemplar sustainable design. It is the first UK building design in accordance with the emerging Wellness Institute principles.

    The Believe in Better building is the largest Massivholz commercial office building in the UK and was designed and constructed in less than one year. It demonstrates what can be achieved through collaborative approach typified by Arup Associates' Unified Design philosophy, with co-located architects and engineers working seamlessly in collaboration with client, contractor and suppliers to get the project from commission to site in only 3 months.

    To achieve this programme, Arup Associates proposed engineered timber system to eliminate wet trades (the CLT can be installed at 500-800m2 week, compared with 300-400m2 week for RC). We also engaged with potential suppliers at concept stage to take on board their advice on how to optimise the construction speed of the frame and envelope. The insulated timber cassettes provide u-values and air-tightness better than Passivhaus requirements and were erected in 8 weeks. So when Mace came on board as main contractor, the suppliers were already familiar with the job.

    The revolutionary timber frame
    The revolutionary timber frame
    The inside of the finished building
    The interitor of the finish building
    Entrance hall of the new building
    Entrance hall of the new building

    Cross-Laminated Timber (CLT) floors usually involve significant acoustic and fire treatment, but we were able to justify the 450 deep raised floor for air supply and services, as providing adequate acoustic separation. This eliminated as a four storey building, the 60 minute fire rating was achievable with charring so the timber can be left exposed, so people can see the natural timber frame. Through our fire engineering approach, we were also able to design out the need for sprinklers, saving the time and money of installing the system.

    The mixed mode servicing strategy includes provision for connection to the sitewide Combined Cooling and Heating System (CCHP), Photovoltaic (PV) arrays on the roof and Flowstow gravity-fed rainwater harvesting to avoid the need for underground tanks and extensive pumps.

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  • Bond Street Station Upgrade

    New Bond Street Station building
      • Principal Contractor Design & Build: Costain Laing O'Rouke Joint Ventures/London Underground
      • Client: London Underground

      The Bond Street Station Upgrade project will provide 30% extra capacity at this key West End transport interchange. The construction of a permanent 6-storey structure, for use in a temporary condition to completely service the tunnelling works will then provide the new Over Site Development.

    The Bond Street Station Upgrade will provide a new entrance to this key transport interchange in the heart of London's West End, together with much enhanced capacity and step free access to all platforms.

    Situated on Oxford Street, one of Europe's busiest shopping areas, the building frame was erected and clad in its temporary configuration, supporting two 17.5 tonne gantry cranes, to allow 24/7 excavation and construction of deep shafts and tunnels which will form the new passageways providing improved access to the Central and Jubilee line platforms.

    The use of a composite steel/precast frame was a key feature in the design to achieve the greater construction loads imposed In the temporary state during tunnelling.

    Lowering materials to the station below
    Lowering materials to the station below
    The frame of the 6 storey service building
    The frame of the 6 storey service building
    The façade helping keep noise down
    The façade helping keep noise down

    Triple height, wholly precast reinforced concrete columns (each weighing 11.5 tonnes),with embedment plates blended together with steel beams encased in concrete allowed the frame to be designed without the first and second floors to meet the 12m height requirement needed to allow passage of materials in and excavation material out.

    The upper floors of the Over Site Development (OSD) provides welfare for the 160 operatives and staff, as well as a safe environment for the workforce, with ventilation and escape routes designed into the scheme.

    The extremely restricted city centre site adds to the complexity of the project. Construction of the OSD precast framework took place concurrently with the shaft excavation and tunnelling works being undertaken below the building; 4-D modelling was used to plan construction activities and logistics on a daily basis. Just-in-time deliveries of precast elements were coordinated with the suppliers well in advance of manufacture to ensure the most efficient build sequence, and reduce the number of deliveries to site, thus minimising disruption to the public.

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  • Western Running Tunnels & Station

    Western running tunnels for Crossrail
      • Main Contractor: BAM Ferrovial Kier Joint Venture
      • Client: Crossrail

      This project comprises of the construction of 6.4km of twin bore running tunnels from Royal Oak to Farringdon and the construction of new tunnelled stations at Bond Street and Tottenham Court Road. The project strategy helped reduced surface settlement by 30%, saved £80m, shortened the programme by 9 months and removed 50,000 lorry movements from central London's roads.

    BAM Ferrovial Kier Joint Venture is a fully integrated Joint Venture responsible for delivering £1bn of Crossrail projects. The £700m Contract C300/C410 "Western Running Tunnels & Station Caverns" commenced in January 2011 and comprised the construction of 6.4km of twin bore running tunnels from Royal Oak to Farringdon using Tunnel Boring Machines (TBMs), and the construction of new tunnelled stations at Bond Street and Tottenham Court Road using sprayed concrete linings (SCL), and an SCL crossover at Holborn. Contract completion is set for mid-2015 and the works are now substantially complete.

    More than 2.3km of SCL caverns were constructed under the UK's most sensitive and valuable real estate, with more than 3,500 stakeholders around more than 22 worksites.

    1.3 million tonnes of spoil were removed from central London in an environmentally responsible manner using underground conveyors and main line railway, achieving over 98% diversion of demolition and construction waste from landfill.

    Tunnel boring machine used to create the tunnels
    Tunnel boring machine used to create the tunnels
    Temporary props over one of the tunnelling shafts
    Temporary props over one of the tunnelling shafts
    A completed tunnel
    A completed tunnel

    The TBMs set new industry standards of settlement control, passing within 700mm of live London Underground infrastructure, achieving consistently 0.5% volume loss, and without a single stakeholder complaint.

    More than £100m was spent protecting critical assets within the London Borough of Kensington and Chelsea, City of Westminster, Camden and the City of London. At Bond Street and Tottenham Court Road, 13 temporary shafts have been constructed, 11,000 monitoring points have been installed, together with 45km of "Tube a Manchette" for Compensation Grouting. This has included state of the art "Shape Array Accelerometers" and hydrostatic levelling cells and 50 robotic total stations, permitting high-precision real-time review of ground movements

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  • Carnaby Street to Duke Street MSS Reinforcement

    MSS running tunnels from Carnaby Street to Duke Street
      • Principal Contractor: Clancy Docwra Ltd
      • Client: UK Power Networks

      The 15 month project was part of a £5m investment in an 11KV 'backbone' interconnection between Carnaby Street and Duke Street. The project involved taking high-voltage cables through constricted tunnelling, as well as laying cables in 2-metre-deep trenches through busy London streets whilst avoiding the myriad of pre-existing utilities.

    UK Power Networks (UKPN) required an 11KV 'backbone' interconnection between Carnaby Street and Duke Street as part of a £5m overall investment to upgrade the electricity infrastructure: "keeping the lights on in the West End of London."

    It involved major civil engineering work and the installation of new high-voltage equipment at both sub-stations, as well as the installation of high voltage cables along a one kilometre route through London, in part utilising sections of an existing tunnel.

    This project has considerable social value, remedying previous issues with, assuring the surety of supply through design features such as 11,000 volt, double buzz-bar switchgear, and future-proofing for sustainability.

    Renewing cabling running in the street
    Renewing cabling running in the street
    Cables coming in from the tunnel
    Cables coming in from the tunnel
    One of the main switch rooms
    One of the main switch rooms
     

    Creative cabling approach

    Our team recognised longer-term pitfalls in the existing installation design, which would have severely restricted future access to the tunnel. Creative repositioning of the new cable runs alongside the existing, with an innovative approach to cleating and fixing and an upgrading of the ventilation system to remove additional cable-generated heat, negated the need for a potentially problematic high-level cable.

    Future-proof health and safety

    The re-design of the tunnel cabling was highly beneficial in terms of future health and safety risks associated with access, but our team also designed-in safety features, including raised walkways over cabling in the sub-stations.

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  • Greenwich Reach Swing Bridge

    Built to bring a community together
      • Principal Contractor: Flint & Neill Ltd
      • Client: Galliard Homes

      Greenwich Reach Swing Bridge completes another link in the riverside Thames Path, crossing the mouth of Deptford Creek in South East London. The structure provides a valued link for residents to access public transport links, local attractions and removing a detour inland to use a busy highway crossing.

    Through engagement with the Port of London Authority as key stakeholders, it was determined that the bridge needed to be entirely clear of the river channel to allow navigation, and a swing bridge founded on the east bank was the obvious solution.

    The bridge has a 44m cable stayed main span supported from a single mast with a central stay plane. A short 8m backspan contains a 120 tonne counterweight to balance the structure. Two pairs of backstays support the tip of the mast laterally and longitudinally.

    Built to help local residents get over Deptford Creek
    Built to help local residents get over Deptford Creek
    Designed to take into account rising sea levels
    Designed to take into account rising sea levels
    Discrete lighting helps prevent glare
    Discrete lighting helps prevent glare

    Discrete handrail lighting and under-bench luminaires provide functional lighting for bridge users, while minimising the potential glare for surrounding residents and marine life. The sustainable and environmental focus of the bridge also extends to the west approaches. Discussions with the Environment Agency outlined that predicted future flood levels may require an increase in the height of the river wall. Thus, to facilitate this future improvement, the west approaches are designed to be entirely demountable and replaceable to allow access for the river wall to be raised.

    Innovation and creativity in construction and design played an important part in the project. The steel structure has been developed with structural efficiency in mind, but has allowed a clear architectural identity to be developed. Faceted planes create an elegant and visually massive backspan and reduce to a more slender main span with a central spine box supporting diagonal struts to the edge of the deck. The plated concept is continued through the main mast, where two vertical flat plates supported by diagonal stiffeners create an innovative open vierendeel type structure. The inclined web plates create openings to the sky to lighten the appearance for maximum transparency.

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  • Guy's Tower Recladding

    Guy's tower at the begining of the project
      • Principal Contractor: Balfour Beatty
      • Client: Essentia, Guy's and St Thomas' NHS Foundation Trust

      The £40 million refurbishment of Guy's Tower which included replacing every window, repairing damaged concrete and applying 8,000m2 of bespoke aluminium cladding to the façade of the 34-storey landmark building. The project was completed on time and under budget. Essential clinical services, which included dental school, laboratories and research facilities, continued uninterrupted throughout the work.

    To secure the future of the 34 storey Guy's Tower, one of the busiest hospital buildings in the UK, a full refurbishment of the external façade has been undertaken. This was a highly complex and challenging civil engineering project, made even more difficult by the need for clinical research and healthcare provision in the building to continue uninterrupted.

    Since opening in 1974 Guy's Tower has been an important architectural landmark which has served the community well. However, three decades of harsh weather and environmental exposure had taken their toll, resulting in severe deterioration of the concrete façade, failing windows and inefficient environmental performance. The scope of this two-year £40 million refurbishment project was to stop the concrete deterioration by stripping the external façades of both towers and replacing the windows and balconies and install bespoke cladding.

    A model of how they planned to clad the towers
    A model of how they planned to clad the towers
    The finished tower
    The finished tower
    Completed towers next to the Shard
    Completed towers next to the Shard
     

    Results:

    8,000m² of bespoke, folded-aluminium cladding was specially designed to cover the existing concrete with a two-man team folding all 3,500 panels by hand

    12,000m² of high-performance, double-glazed windows installed with solar-selective glass to control solar gain in the summer (which affects cooling)

    Cleaned and resealed 40 years of environmentally damaged concrete, revealing the 'white' cement used in the original construction and improving aesthetics

    Existing windows were replaced with a new façade placed in front of the existing columns, allowing the new cladding to be installed before the old windows were removed – minimising disruption and providing 48m² of additional floor space per floor once the old façade was removed

    18,300 tonnes of carbon saved and improved energy consumption

    By re-cladding the Tower we have increased healthcare efficiency and identified savings of £111,000 pa through reduction in maintenance and energy costs, which can be reinvested in patient care.

    To further enhance the Tower's place on the London skyline, a rooftop art installation funded by the GSTT Charity was commissioned - the result was Carsten Nicolai's 'Aeolux'. The additional height of the artwork means the tower can once again regain its crown as the world's tallest hospital building at 148.65m.

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  • Hammersmith Flyover Strengthening and refurbishment works

    Hammersmith Flyover in West London
      • Principal Contractor: Costain
      • Client: Transport for London

      The Hammersmith Flyover carries 70,000 vehicles each day. Post-Tensioned Special Inspections revealed severe corrosion of the pre-stressing strands which, if left, would affect the structure's load carrying capacity. The technical complexity, interdependency and strategic location presented numerous constraints in both design and construction.

    The Hammersmith Flyover, opened in 1961, is a strategic route into Central London. It is a pre-cast post-tensioned structure, supporting a dual two lane carriageway carrying 70,000 vehicles each day. Post-Tensioned Special Inspections revealed severe corrosion of the pre-stressing strands which, if left, would affect the structure's load carrying capacity. This, together with other upgrade and refurbishment works presented a unique challenge and opportunity with a fully integrated team working to strengthen and extend the flyover's life.

    Starting with Early Contractor Involvement to construction, new technologies and innovations were developed for design and installation of a pioneering Post Tensioning (PT) system. Use of Ultra High Performance Fibre Reinforced Concrete (UHPFRC), with strengths of up to 180 MPa, for insitu and precast tendon anchors (blisters) reduced their size and weight. Application of cable stay technology for post-tensioning tendons enhanced durability. This is the first application of this type in the UK.

    The new strengthening ties on the flyover
    The new strengthening ties on the flyover
    Adding strength with new steel beams
    Adding strength with new steel beams
    the finished product
    the finished product

    The construction team designed, manufactured and tested tools capable of lifting blisters, each eighing up to 3t, positioning them safely into pre-drilled holes within tight tolerances. This has been achieved without any incidents, minimising traffic disruptions and maintaining pedestrian access at all times.

    The team designed manufactured and tested a bespoke concrete injection tool (syringe) to place the UHPFRC. The standard concrete pump would have caused uneven fibre distribution and have resulted in excessive waste. This innovative solution enabled the project to safely carry out concreting perations on a restricted and congested site. Both bespoke pieces of equipment were tested on our full scale off site mock-up to ensure the works could be delivered safely, efficiently and effectively before being used on the structure itself.

    The project extends the overall life of the structure and reduces future maintenance liabilities. A slender PT design maintains the aesthetic qualities of this iconic structure, as well as reducing the risk of vehicle impact.

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  • Heathrow Airport, Runway Rehabilitation

    Heathrow Airport runway rehabilitation
      • Main Contractor: Morgan Sindall plc
      • Client: Heathrow Airport Ltd

      The runways Heathrow airport, all 340,000m2 (this is the equivalent of 48 football pitches), were successfully resurfaced. This was a challenging project delivered at night, within restricted possessions, which required exceptional planning and on-site management in order for successful delivery.

    Works started on the 31st March on both years (2013 for the Southern Runway, 2014 for the Northern) when the runway lighting systems were temporarily downgraded, with both runways returned to full CAT III Operating Conditions by the end of September each year. The project also upgraded the existing Airfield Ground Lights on both runways.

    In order to sustain the operational capability of Heathrow, construction works took place at night following the last aircraft movement from 22:30 (Sunday to Thursday working shift) on the associated runway, returning to operational use the following morning, returning to HAL Operations by 05:30, ready for the first flight to land at 06:00; a working window of seven hours. Each night an 80m section of the runway was resurfaced.

    Runway resurfacing taking place at night
    Runway resurfacing taking place at night
    Essential maintenance can only happen at night, when the airport is quiet
    Essential maintenance can only happen at night, when the airport is quiet
    Handed back on time, every time
    Handed back on time, every time

    To achieve a project of this nature, the planning of the works was critical. This not only took into account time and motion studies, logistical planning, contingency planning but also health, safety and welfare requirements catering for up to 180 personnel and over 100 vehicles involved.

    Handback on time every time: Planning for each night's work started at 03.00 planning meeting on the night before, as well as during the day of the shift between the HAL Project team, Airside Operations and MS. The weather, operational constraints, resource issues, security, and the nights planned work were all reviewed prior to the shift, complete with detailed decision point checklists.

    Both runways were completed to programme. The Northern Runway turn-off's to full CATIII status one month early.

    Morgan Sindall's legacy: Through the successful delivery of both Runways at Heathrow in 2013/14, MS is considered to be the leading main contractor for delivering of runway rehabilitation works for commercial airports. Over 191,200 arrivals and departures aircraft per year make use of the resurfaced runway, which is next scheduled to be resurfaced in another 10 years time. On completion, the project has been widely deemed a success and the details of works achieved has spread worldwide. Representatives from afar as Toronto, Singapore and Sri Lanka have expressed an interest in the processes and systems developed to successfully deliver this project.

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  • Herne Hill Flood Alleviation Scheme

    Herne Hill flood defences and play ground
      • Principal Contractor: MGJV
      • Client: Thames Water & Southwark Council

      This project utilised parks in an innovative approach to protect over 100 homes and businesses from risk of flooding in Dulwich and Herne Hill caused by runoff rainfall. Sensitive design helped avoid the appearance of engineering structures in the parks while creating play areas for local children.

    The Herne Hill Flood Alleviation Scheme is an innovative approach to flood risk management, protecting over 100 homes and businesses from flooding in Dulwich and Herne Hill. The scheme has been delivered by Thames Water in partnership with Southwark Council and the Environment Agency and is one of the first multi-agency Sustainable Urban Drainage Systems (SuDS) schemes delivered in London.

    Surface water is managed utilising the natural fall of the land, with no requirement for additional resource other than from future maintenance. It is this simplicity that ensures the scheme is sustainable, enhanced by balancing the 12,000m³ of excavation with the fill required to build the flood defences to avoid the use of other natural materials. Sensitive detailing has also led to the creation of 3750m² wetland and 6400m² of wildflower meadows to attract wildlife, enhancing local habitats and biodiversity.

    A model of Herne Hill flood defences and new child play area
    A model of Herne Hill flood defences and new child play area
    Work begins on the ground water tank
    Work begins on the ground water tank
    Finished off with a flood wall
    Finished off with a flood wall

    The use of SuDS has presented significant opportunities to enhance the environment within the parks. The design acknowledges how these spaces are used and how the flood defences may be impacted. The flood defences are designed to reflect the character of grade two listed parks and allows them to be enjoyed as an open space area. The integration of the flood defences with the children's play area in Dulwich Park also creates an environment for children to enjoy and explore.

    A schools programme was created to explain the scheme with over 450 children across six local primary schools taking part. The effect of flooding and its impact on the local area was demonstrated via the use of a scale model of Dulwich to replicate the topography of the area. Pupils were asked to recreate rainfall so that they could see the effect surface water has on flooding. Several classes visited Dulwich Park to see the construction work in action.

    The scheme has been a successful investment in flood risk management by private and public sector organisations. At its inception, managing the requirements of each of the partners while consulting with local stakeholders to identify their needs presented worthwhile challenges. This relationship provides opportunities for future partnership projects which can benefit from the lessons learned in delivering this scheme.

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  • London Overground Capacity Improvement Programme

    London overground extends trains to 5 cars
      • Principal Contractor: CH2M Hill
      • Client: Transport for London

      London Overground has grown fourfold in the last seven years. This demand lead to a Mayoral commitment to urgently increase capacity by lengthening trains from 4 to 5 carriages. This transformative 25% increase in capacity was delivered to passengers within just 20 months.

    The London Overground Capacity Improvement Programme (LOCIP) successfully delivered 5-car trains on the East London Line in November 2014. This transformative 25% increase in capacity was delivered to passengers within just 20 months of TfL Board approval through outstanding engineering and project management. In order to meet the very challenging target date set by the Mayor, discrete packages of works were accelerated to allow site preparation and site formation to commence whilst the main works designs were being developed.

    A complex multi-discipline integrated design was developed with input from 7 design houses, resulting in over 900 designs being produced and accepted for construction by our 3 main delivery partners In order to succeed in delivering a complex sequence of construction works across various sites the main works contractors Cleshar, C Spencer and Sl MS and their subcontractors executed delivery collaboratively, with a culture of integration and interface throughout design and construction. The output of this delivered seamless testing and commissioning of the new infrastructure.

    London Overground have added an extra coach to their trains
    London Overground have added an extra coach to their trains
    New siding on old contaminated ground
    New siding on old contaminated ground
    A new state-of-the-art depot for the trains
    A new state-of-the-art depot for the trains"

    The 40m extension of the maintenance shed had to bridge one of London's major utility corridors. The design is such that the mezzanine style structure supports the building and trains whilst retaining access for utility suppliers to their assets underneath. A key construction challenge was piling around and between these services, one pile was bored within 1m of a UK Power Networks cable servicing 250,000 London homes at a time when there was no network redundancy.

    The project had the enormous challenge of squeezing an extra 23m of train into platforms and surrounding infrastructure, including the signalling system previously optimised for 4 car trains - whilst keeping daily passenger journeys as normal as possible. A few platforms that couldn't be physically extended adopted state of the art Selective Door Opening (SDO) technology to prevent specific doors from opening. A secondary benefit of the SDO system is Correct Side Door Enabling (this is further discussed in the H&S section).

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  • Merchant Square Footbridge

    Merchant Square footbridge
      • Architect: Knight Architects
      • Client: European Land and Property Ltd

      A new moving footbridge at Merchant Square in Paddington, London. Merchant Square provides over 600 local residents, workers and the general public with a safe, accessible and understated canal crossing whilst closed, and a beautiful kinetic sculpture whilst open.

    In setting the brief, the client European Land & Property Limited recognised that bridges are an important component of the built environment- highly visible forms that have a significant impact on their locality and bring connectivity, identity and delight - and that context, composition, scale and function can be juxtaposed with fundamental engineering demands for safety, economy, durability and constructability as the basis for lasting quality.

    As well as the axial alignment of the crossing, the other aspect of the brief which inspired the team was the opportunity for the bridge to provide drama in its movement. The relatively modest span suggested that only vertical movement will offer the drama sought in the brief, certainly when compared to a slewing or swing bridge. This arrangement also suited constraints on land ownership which dictated the bridge structure should be supported primarily from the north end, with only limited support provided on the south bank.

    The lifting bridge in the open position
    The lifting bridge in the open position
    The bridge in its normal state
    The bridge in its normal state
    Not only a bridge, but a sculpture when raised
    Not only a bridge, but a sculpture when raised

    The design of the footbridge structure relied very much on the fabricator's ability to manufacture the five 'fingers' to very exacting tolerances. When in its lowered position the five slender steel fingers had to effectively create a flat, almost seamless walking surface which put a lot of responsibility on the skill of the fabricators assembling the structure.

    Each of the five beams forming the bridge is activated with a small single-acting hydraulic cylinder driven from a single power pack located in the basement of the adjoining building. Access to the hydraulic cylinders can therefore be gained without closing the bridge to pedestrians and the bridge beams can be raised to provide ready access for inspection, cleaning and maintenance.

    This type of basic mechanism is robust, proven and easy to operate and maintain and allowed for a cost-effective solution to be reached. There were savings too in terms of the supporting structure, which does not need to be designed for high braking loads in case of an emergency stop condition.

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  • Moorgate Exchange

    Moorgate Exchange at night
      • Contractor: Skanska & Ramboll
      • Client: Brookfield Multiplex

      Moorgate Exchange a striking £65 million commercial redevelopment 12 storeys providing 225,000sq ft of grade A office space. The project provides a dynamic and high quality commercial building that makes a modern architectural statement. It received the highest BREEAM and LEED sustainability ratings due to its passive design measures.

    A striking £65 million commercial redevelopment in central London, the brief for Moorgate Exchange focused on two core aims:

    • Provide a dynamic and high quality commercial building that made a modern architectural statement, while maximising lettable area.
    • Produce a structure that achieved the highest BREEAM and LEED sustainability ratings.

    The presence of a subterranean chamber infringing on the south-west corner of the building precluded the use of a founding column in this location. The most effective way of overcoming this problem, without causing undue stresses in other areas of the structure, was to introduce a raking column solution, and subsequently an adjacent triangular formation to effectively resist overturning forces.

    The exterior of the building
    The exterior of the building
    The internal frame of the building
    The internal frame of the building
    Roof garden with views over the London skyline
    Roof garden with views over the London skyline

    The presence of subterranean chambers and proposed Crossrail tunnels under the site, as well as the very close proximity of the London Underground tunnels to the nearby Moorgate station, led to a very tightly constrained site. It was decided the most efficient foundation solution for the building would be to introduce a reinforced concrete raft.

    The 1.2m deep foundation raft used Xypex waterproof concrete, which is crystalline technology that enabled a grade 3 basement. The use of recycled stent aggregate and GGBS attributed to the high sustainability credentials. The heavily reinforced slab required the use of shear rails to assist the punching shear of basement columns another innovative idea to constructing the foundation instead of the traditional shear links which proved difficult to install.

    The raft future proofed the building for the new Crossrail tunnels proposed under the site. The effective use of this solution demonstrates how a different solution to the oft-used piling can be achieved in constrained London sites.

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  • The Vision and direction of London's roads & Streets, Roads Task Force

    TfL's Road Task Force
      • Company: Transport for London

      The Roads Task Force (RTF) was set up by the Mayor of London to tackle the challenges facing London's streets and roads. The economic and social value of this vision is immense, as every Londoner, business and visitor is affected by what happens on the city's streets and roads.

    The Mayor's Roads Task Force (RTF) report sets out a bold new vision for the future of London's roads and streets to ensure the Capital can cope with major population, job and housing growth, while remaining one of the most attractive, vibrant, accessible and competitive world cities.

    With road congestion in London costing the UK economy £4bn a year, it sets out a radical new plan to keep London moving. The economic and social value of this vision is immense, as every Londoner, business and visitor is affected by what happens on the city's streets and roads.

    The report sets out the RTF vision: world class streets, fit for the future; the framework, tools and processes to build the strategy; how the vision can be achieved locally and London wide, and; the need for strategic interventions over the next twenty years.

    New Elephant and Castle layout
    New Elephant and Castle layout
    Blackfriars road redevelopment
    Blackfriars road redevelopment
    Proposed St Georges's Circus roundabout
    Proposed St Georges's Circus roundabout

    Regarding sustainability, the strategy would enable the growth of the central London activities zone and will support broader economic development and productivity by improving further the operation of the network - using advanced traffic control technology and by tackling congestion bottlenecks e.g. with fly-unders and mini-tunnels.

    Additionally, decking-over roads and providing tunnels to free up space on the surface will unlock land for much needed housing development. Cleaner, greener and more active forms of travel will be enabled by the transformation of existing roads, including through lower speed limits, investment for pedestrians and cyclists and further investment in public transport.

    TfL has prioritised its £4bn 'Roads Modernisation Plan' to begin to deliver this vision. This includes 17 major road schemes to create better public spaces and support redevelopment and economic growth, 33 junction improvements to make them safer and more attractive for vulnerable road users, four new Cycle Superhighways as well as improvements to four existing routes, a programme of modernising traffic signals, and maintenance and modernisation of essential roads, bridges and tunnels. Additionally, TfL is working with local authorities and Business Improvement Districts (BIDs) to shape local delivery and trial innovations.

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  • Victoria Station Upgrade

    Victoria station upgrade
      • Principal Contractor & Designer: Taylor Woodrow BAM Nuttall Joint Venture
      • Client: London Underground Ltd

      This complex project is at the centre of a major transport interchange between Victoria Underground Station, National Rail Station and Bus Terminus; weaved around a dense population of residents, commuters and stakeholders, including two of the capital's longstanding Grade II listed theatres. Works were completed with little effect on the station despite clearances of less than 100mm in places and trains continuing to run at 1 minute intervals at times.

    We are extending the existing ticket hall, providing a new ticket hall, constructing approximately 300m of tunnels to link the two halls, and providing step-free access into the station. The upgrade supports over 400 jobs and has provided 20 apprenticeships to date.

    2014 saw our Sprayed Concrete Lining (SCL) tunnel construction substantially completed, with remaining works completed in January 2015. This has been successful despite Victoria's extremely challenging conditions, where ground collapses during previous tunnelling projects has been an issue.

    Over 2,000 interlocking jet grout columns were installed to enable safe tunnelling, in the first large-scale use of jet grouting for tunnel construction in the UK. This was also the first time the method had been used on the LU estate.

    A 'propless' solution allowed more room for the passengers
    A 'propless' solution allowed more room for the passengers
    Waterproofing one of the passenger tunnels
    Waterproofing one of the passenger tunnels
    Jet grouting sites around Victoria Station
    Jet grouting sites around Victoria Station

    Every inch of space counts in an underground station that handles more passengers than Heathrow Airport each year, so we challenged traditional tunnelling methods to maximise space and developed the innovative 'propless' tunnel connection solution.

    This removed the need for temporary propping of openings formed between the new and existing station assets, maximising available public space in the station. We used additional jet grout columns to reduce water loading on existing tunnel assets adjacent to the proposed opening, and adopted a new approach to internal propping such that temporary props were kept within the worksite rather than taking valuable station space.

    Our priority has been to deliver a safe and efficient programme of works whilst keeping the station fully operational and minimising impact on the community. This has been successfully achieved by rigorously challenging traditional engineering methods, and the collaboration of all parties involved in the Upgrade. We believe the innovative solutions that we have developed will lead the way for future Underground upgrades and benefit similar infrastructure projects for years to come.

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'Designed in London' category

  • Panama Circito Bridge

    Panama community bridge project
      • Company: Ove Arup and Partners
      • Client: Bridges to Prosperity

      Charity Bridges and Arup have collaborated with the aim to elevate poverty caused by rural isolation. A bridge was needed in the Panamaian jungle to help improve safety and connectivity. This project fulfilled this need by providing safe access to schools, healthcare centres and markets to more than 1000 people.

    "A world where poverty caused by rural isolation no longer exists" is the vision of the charity Bridges to Prosperity (B2P). Arup collaborates with them and is helping to achieve this; one bridge at a time.

    For design efficiency in these projects, Arup developed "BridgeTOOL", a digital design tool and learning resource that enables the rapid design of suspension footbridges and produces the documentation for construction. B2P now use this tool on every suspension footbridge.

    A bridge was needed in the Panamanian jungle to connect three villages separated by the river Ciricito, which floods four months of the year due to heavy rainfall and is impossible to cross safely. Therefore, a team of nine Arup volunteers used BridgeTOOL to design the Ciricito suspension footbridge spanning a distance of 46 metres, and travelled to Panama to construct it, together with the local community and three B2P employees.

    Locals helping build their new bridge
    Locals helping build their new bridge
    Working together with industry experts
    Working together with industry experts
    Allowing safe access to transport and health care
    Allowing safe access to transport and health care

    The construction of the bridge was a feat of co-ordination and control over tough site constraints, a short 12-day program, and the complexity of working in a developing country with limited access to tools and materials.

    The success of this project can be attributed to excellent project management and planning, but also the ability shown by the Arup team and the local community to adapt both themselves and the methods employed to unexpected changes and to the local environment.

    The local community was involved in the construction of the bridge and great emphasis was placed on sharing all construction tasks between the different parties in order to maximise the exchange of knowledge. This resulted in trained locals with the required skills to look after the bridge in the future and carry out any necessary repairs.

    The completed bridge now provides safe access to schools, medical centres and markets for more than 1,000 people, clearly demonstrating the positive impact this project has had on the local community. However, this project has gone far beyond building this bridge. It involved full engagement and knowledge sharing with the local community.

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  • QEII Bridge Expansion Joint Replacement

    The Queen Elizabeth II Bridge
      • Designer: Flint & Neill Ltd
      • Client: Connect Plus

      An over-bridge-ramp system - a world's first for joint replacement on this scale. The replacement of movement joints on the bridge provided a challenge. This inherently safe innovative solution reduced congestion, pollution and saved millions of pounds of road closure costs.

    The QEII Bridge carries the southbound M25 traffic (over 80,000 vehicles per day) over the River Thames. It is a critical piece of national infrastructure; any reduction in capacity results in severe delays and consequent economic loss for London, the country as a whole and the DBFO operator. It is also reported in the national media.

    The bridge is over 20 years old and the original movement joints had been suffering from component failures and progressive fatigue damage over the last few years. An increasingly costly regime of regular monitoring and repair had been implemented to minimise the risk of failures and prevent serious traffic disruption. A decision was taken to replace the joints.

    Working at night to reduce delays
    Working at night to reduce delays
    The new expasion joints helping reduce roadworks
    The new expasion joints helping reduce roadworks
    A ramp system in place that allows traffic to travel at 50mph
    A ramp system in place that allows traffic to travel at 50mph

    There were six movement joints that required replacement, one at each viaduct abutment and a double joint at each transition pier between the main bridge and viaducts. Connect Plus, together with framework suppliers, Flint & Neill Limited and Jacksons Civil Engineering collaboratively developed an innovative temporary overramp providing both an emergency solution in case of premature joint failure, and to permit the planned joint replacement with the minimum of traffic disruption.

    The unique system permitted maximum traffic speeds to remain at 50mph; could be quickly installed and removed in night-time closures; allowed work underneath during the day; was able to be removed modularly to enable lane by lane work at night; and accommodated the full range of wind and thermal movements. This is the first system in the world to satisfy all these objectives.

    The system has fulfilled all the requirements of the DBFO operator in replacing the joints with minimum financial penalty, so successfully, that it is planned to use the same system to replace similar joints at over 30 other locations on the network.

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  • The Everyman Theatre, Liverpool

    The Everyman Theatre, Liverpool
      • Company: Alan Baxter & Associates
      • Client: The Liverpool and Merseyside Theatres Trust Ltd (LMTT)

      The Everyman Theatre is a re-imagination of a beloved Liverpool institution. The structure is designed to facilitate an innovative natural ventilation and passive heating and cooling system to reduce its energy demand and has reutilised materials, particularly the bricks, from the original building.

    The building consists of a reinforced concrete frame split over four storeys and a single storey basement. The building houses a 450+ seater auditorium, a community theatre space, a rehearsal studio, a basement bistro bar, the administrative centre of the LMTT, and all the back-of house facilities required for a state of the art theatre. All of these spaces are contained on a highly constrained city centre site bounded by a Grade II* listed building and with important views between the cathedrals of Liverpool along Hope Street needing to be maintained.

    A key driver in the overall design of the building is it's sustainability which is a complex issue in a theatre. The building has achieved a BREAAM Excellent rating focusing on maximising natural ventilation and passive cooling/heating wherever possible. This was a particular challenge in the auditorium where achieving stable conditions is notoriously difficult.

    The entrance way to the new theatre
    The entrance way to the new theatre
    Designed for natural ventilation and cooling
    Designed for natural ventilation and cooling
    The main theatre stage
    The main theatre stage

    The concrete frame construction also made a significant contribution to the overall sustainability with 40% cement replacements used in the mixes and used formwork reused in the building's internal finishes. Brickwork from the original theatre was also salvaged and re-used in the new building.

    The structural design of the building had to overcome a wide range of challenges, which included:

    • Deflection critical auditorium steelwork supporting theatre related technical loads,
    • Major transfer structures within key parts of the building to allow the many functions of the building to fit around each other,
    • Complex articulated front facade with tight design tolerances,
    • Long-span roof structures over auditorium and rehearsal spaces.

    The finished project has created a state of the art theatre for Liverpool, that provides all the facilities a modern arts venue requires but maintains the intimacy and vibrancy of its much loved predecessor.

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