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Best of the North West: The ICE Merit Awards 2009

The cream of North West projects was honoured last Friday at the ICE North West annual awards dinner which was held in Rheged, Cumbria.

Merit Award Winner

A590 High & Low Newton Bypass  

Commissioning Authority: Highways Agency
Principal Designer: Pell Frischmann
Principal Contractor: Laing O’Rourke Infrastructure
Nominated by: Tsuwun Bevan, Pell Frischmann  

This scheme bypasses two communities separated by a road carrying 16,000 vehicles/day (12% HGV). The old road had accident rates three times above the national average. The bypass removed more than 90% of traffic.

The scheme is in the Lake District National Park, and features new hedgerow, tree-planting, dry stone walls, balancing ponds and a bat guidance structure.

No waste was disposed of off site, and the project used locally sourced materials and labour. Local schoolchildren were involved in tree planting and in burying a time capsule. The scheme has received the CEEQUAL Excellent Award and the Considerate Constructors Bronze Award.  

Merit Award Highly Commended   

Liverpool Cruise Liner Terminal  

Commissioning Authority: Liverpool City Council
Principal Designer: Balfour Beatty Civil Engineering
Principal Contractor: Balfour Beatty Civil Engineering
Others involved: Gifford / Maritime Sector Specialists / Cass Associates
Nominated by: Paul Brown, Balfour Beatty Civil Engineering   

The Liverpool Cruise Liner Facility enables liners and naval vessels to berth in the heart of the city. The cellular pontoons required an extremely high percentage of reinforcement. An in-house developed self-compacting concrete was used to mitigate the challenge of placing concrete in the exceptionally slender columns and walls.

The pontoons were constructed within the Mersey dock system. A graving dock was adapted for construction by installing a recycled aggregate porous casting bed enabling the pontoons to be floated without damage. The linkspan was pre-fabricated in Italy, shipped in sections and assembled onshore.

The bridge was launched utilising a super-lift crane to lift the riverward end, while bogies under the landward end launched it out over the water. The bridge was lowered onto the waiting flotation tank, which was then ballasted to land the bridge on the pontoon.

The project had zero reportable incidents/accidents over 350,000 man hours.   

Spinningfields Square  

Commissioning Authority: Allied London Properties
Principal Designer: Sheppard Robson Architects
Principal Contractor: Bovis Lend Lease
Others involved: Capita Symonds Structures (civil and structural design, William Hare (steelwork contractor) Nominated by: Andrew Wilson, Capita Symonds  

This building has a form of two parallelograms oppositely handed and positioned over each other, forming a roof terrace to the west and a 23m cantilever to the east.  

A three storey elevational truss was incorporated to resolve the cantilever. The truss was replicated in all elevations to provide the lateral stability of the upper block of the structure, with loads transferred via the floor diaphragms.

Steel was delivered in erectable packages to the confined site. The structure was engineered to suit the cladding deflection requirements, with a deflection matrix being developed to determine differential deflections of cladding modules and ensure compatibility between the frame and the glazing.  

This project has created the largest office cantilever in Europe that the project team is aware of.

The A590 High & Low Newton Bypass project has received the CEEQUAL Excellent Award and the Considerate Constructors Bronze Award

Merit Award Commended  

Hesketh Outmarsh West Managed Realignment/ Saltmarsh Creation, Hesketh Bank, Lancashire  

Commissioning Authority: RSPB/Environment Agency
Principal Designer: Environment Agency
Principal Contractor: Environment Agency
Others involved: Halcrow Group through planning permission stage
Nominated by: Robert Ide, Environment Agency  

This is one of the largest managed realignment schemes in Europe and recreates 168ha of saltmarsh on land formerly drained and farmed. 

The project reinstates natural tidal inundation to a large area of land adjacent to the Ribble estuary forming a natural saltmarsh sea defence between high tides and the newly created sea defence embankment 1km inland.

The saltmarsh contributes significantly to the UK Biodiversity Action plan targets for habitat creation. The site will be an RSPB reserve. Material for the new flood embankments came from the excavation of a former creek network and new saline lagoons which help form the nature reserve, preventing the need for 6,600 vehicle movements of soil through neighbouring villages.

The success of managed realignment at this site can be used as a flagship example to encourage further managed realignment schemes in the UK.     

Community Award Joint Winners

Eden and Petteril Flood Alleviation Scheme, Carlisle, Cumbria 

Commissioning Authority:Environment Agency
Principal Designer: Atkins
Principal Contractor: Volker Stevin
Nominated by: Graham Sheppard, Environment Agency
Type of scheme: Flood defence  

This scheme [Eden and Petteril flood alleviation] upgraded and raised an existing 3.5m high Victorian stonework riverside wall to provide a flood defence  

This scheme upgraded and raised an existing 3.5m high Victorian stonework riverside wall to provide a flood defence. The wall supports an access road. The Pali Radice technique was developed to improve the structural performance of the existing substandard wall and accommodate the increased loading associated with required flood defence levels.

One hundred and twenty five alternatively inclined minipiles, up to 15m long, were installed through the existing wall, stitching it together and transferring load from the increased levels to underlying stratum. This solution provides a cost effective, environmentally sound solution with health, safety and environmental benefits over more traditional techniques.

This system is now successfully in use elsewhere in the Environment Agency’s programme.   

Lower Lancaster Flood Alleviation Scheme – Phase 1, Lancaster  

Commissioning Authority:Environment Agency
Principal Designer: Halcrow
Principal Contractor:Carillion
Others involved: Black & Veatch
Nominated by: Chris Stone, Environment Agency
Type of scheme: Flood defence  

The River Lune has a history of widespread flooding at Lower Lancaster. Before these works, the standard of flood protection was in places as low as one in five years. The scheme comprises 1.6km of walls and 1.6km of earth embankment, providing flood protection to the predicted one in 500 year event flood level.

Sourcing fill material for the embankment was a key issue. Importing the fill would involve around 8,000 HGV movements through Lancaster city centre. The solution was to obtain the fill from a field adjacent to the works. In return for providing the fill for free, the landowner was provided with alignment to protect his land.  

An additional 530m of earth embankment was constructed, but avoided the £500,000 of fill import. Environmental improvements include six hectares of open water, reedbed, wet grassland and woodland habitats.

The scheme [Lower Lancaster flood alleviation] comprises 1.6km of walls and 1.6km of earth embankment, providing protection to the predicted 1 in 500 year flood level

Kingsway Business Park Phase 2, Rochdale, Lancashire

Commissioning Authority: Wilson Bowden Developments with NWDA
Principal Designer: WYG Engineering
Principal Contractor: Carillion
Others involved: Gleeds Project Management, Scott Wilson, DLA Architecture
Nominated by: Jon Tree, Carillion
Type of scheme: Infrastructure  

Ashton Wastewater Treatment Works, Greater Manchester               

Commissioning Authority: United Utilities
Principal Designer:  MWH, GHA Livigunn
Principal Contractor: KMI Plus
Nominated by: Stewart Tennant, GHA Livigunn
Type of scheme: Wastewater treatment works  

Lord Street Phase 2 – Environmental Improvements,Southport, Merseyside

Commissioning Authority: Sefton Metropolitan Borough Council
Principal Designer: Capita Symonds
Principal Contractor: Balfour Beatty Civil Engineering  
Nominated by: Kevin Earle  
Type of scheme: Public Realm   

Ramsden Business Park, Barrow in Furness, Cumbria

Commissioning Authority: Cumbria County Council
Principal Designer: Capita Symonds
Principal Contractor:Carillion
Nominated by: Kevin Thompson, Carillion
Type of scheme: Urban Regeneration  

Southport Station Roof Renewal and Enhancements

Commissioning Authority: Network Rail
Principal Designer: Atkins
Principal Contractor: Kier Construction
Others involved: NSS and Engineering Design Services Int   
Nominated by: Peter Adamson, Kier Construction  
Type of scheme: Complex renewal of heritage station roof and enhancement works  


  • Best of the North West: The ICE Merit Awards 2009

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