The Crumlin River Bridge project is a genuine example of collaboration at work to achieve project success. A ‘One Team’ culture ran throughout from design to commissioning and completion. The outcome of our project is an important enhancement to the Western Valley rail route. The new structure will increase capacity and is future proofed to modern standards with 120-year design life.
We managed to secure £5.1m funding from the Department for Transport (Dft) in September 2019 to replace the existing bridge. This was a result of under spend across DfTs rail network enhancements pipeline. With a nine day railway closure agreed for September 2020, this gave us just 12-months to tender and award the contract before designing, planning and fabricating in readiness for delivery. Through our collaborative working we managed to achieve all strategic planning, consent application, licencing agreements and procurement in order to start the work on time. And, we succeeded in completing the physical work within the nine day disruptive closure period allowing train, bus and road services to resume as planned.
The scheme has seen circa 50,000-working hours complete without incident and zero injuries, demonstrating the high-level of health and safety standards expected and adhered to throughout. We proactively managed work and the site in a way to prevent cases of COVID-19 among our site team and supply chain, while maintaining the critical path delivery programme and high-standard of work with regards to quality.
The quality of our project is proven as the upgraded structure was handed back to the asset owner after just one inspection with limited snagging works required; an outstanding achievement considering the limited planning time, restricted layout, geography and the logistical restrictions on site.
We designed this scheme to minimise impact to the environment from concept to close out. We developed bespoke temporary works that removed the need to work in the river eliminating the associated environmental risks, and we completed a Capital Asset Value for Amenity Trees (CAVAT) assessment to ensure that any trees and vegetation removed, was appropriately replaced. We removed a total of 1,500 tonnes of material from site, all of which was processed to avoid landfill. We also planned and coordinated the work to avoid closing the nearby A467 strategic trunk road which saved thousands of cumulative diversion mileage for road users.
Our project was completed without any complaints from lineside neighbours or road users and received widespread positive feedback from numerous stakeholders including Local Authority and DfT.
The success of our project has led to the Welsh Government committing £70m of funding to completing the re-doubling of the railway line Crumlin River Bridge has been replaced.
The project demonstrated best practice and innovation to overcome several challenging site constraints and achieve a design that upgraded the performance and design life of the overbridge while minimising intrusive and high risk construction processes where possible.