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Gondola bridge wins award


A DUAL-purpose footbridge which can also carry commuters across the Thames in hanging gondolas has won the London Association's 1999 Merit Award.

The £4M Royal Victoria Dock Footbridge provides residents of the new Britannica Village development in Silvertown with access to the Docklands Light Railway at the Royal Victoria Dock.

Although it currently functions solely as a footbridge, the design allows it to be converted to carry commuters in gondolas suspended beneath the deck.

Project main contractor Kier Southern, engineer and project manager Technika and architect Lifschutz-Davidson collected the award at the Association's annual dinner held in British Airways' new £275M World Cargo centre at Heathrow last Friday.

Christiani & Nielsen chief executive Alan Crane, who presented the award, said: 'The footbridge is a stunning concept, engineered into reality. The engineers used the old fig truss concept to achieve a modern concept. It was an innovative design, superbly executed.'

Kvaerner Cementation Foundations, London Underground Earth Structures Projects and Mott MacDonald received a special award for their embankment stabilisation work between Wimbledon and Southfields in South London.

Crane said: 'What struck me was the totally joined-up thinking of the engineering team - the client, the designer and the contractor.

Three Whitby Bird & Partners projects - Golders Hill Cafe, Ten Crown Place and Thames Court Footbridge, were also short listed along with WS Atkins' Guildhall Yard East Development.

Southern Association's Merit Award has gone jointly to Mott MacDonald and Costain for the Newbury Bypass.

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