Steel for Highways, Motorways and Bridges
BS Steels is a leading exponent of complex and bespoke solutions required for highway and bridge repairs, especially remedial work to address metal fatigue. A Tier 2 recommended contractor with Connect Plus, BS Steels regularly partners framework and other contractors, including Osborne, Balfour Beatty and Atkins.
Highway management presents a multitude of engineering challenges. These, and demanding key performance targets from the Highways Agency, require contractors to deliver effective, timely solutions.
BS Steels applies a range of alternative resources and techniques, and a rapid and effective response. These enable strategically planned maintenance to meet targets, whilst for more urgent needs we are always ready to be put to the test.
BS Steels has achieved Execution Class EXC3, under CE legislation. This is the level required for our business in the highways, railways and major structures areas, where higher performance is required to accommodate higher structural risks.
Case Studies: M25 Highway and Viaduct Repairs
In July 2012, BS Steels was called in to carry out remedial work on the M4 Boston Manor viaduct. A very complex piece of engineering was completed in a demanding timescale, with the M4 intended to serve as a key artery for London Olympic traffic. Read Project Report.
In 2015, we carried out urgent repairs to steel plates between bridge spans at the Dartford Crossing. A series of 16mm thick plates, each weighing over 1 tonne, required replacement. Using data from electronic scans, the plates were milled to match as exactly as possible the unique profile and undulations of the existing structure. Within 5 days the plates had been replaced on the bridge.
BS Steels is involved in ongoing remedial work at the M25 Gade Valley Viaduct. Working with Highways England, Connect Plus and Osborne, we are strengthening the welds on the underside of the viaduct spans on the M25 Gade Valley Viaduct. By Junction 20 of the M25, the viaduct carries the motorway over the Grand Union Canal, the River Gade, a major road and the main London-Birmingham Railway. By any standards, therefore, it represents infrastructure critical to the UK’s econonomy.
Dartford Crossing Traffic Management
Throughout 2014, BS Steels worked on preparations for the introduction of free-flow tolls at the Dartford Crossing.
At the Crossing we carried out overnight and weekend works to install gantries and signage, within tight time windows to minimise impact on road users. Partnering with Osborne, BS Steels unloaded and installed gantries and sign support assemblies, to approaches to both the QEII bridge and the tunnel, and also carried out emergency manufacture of Holding Down Bolt Assemblies.
BS Steels also designed and manufactured test gantries in our Portsmouth workshops. These were commissioned by Balfour Beatty for a 1km replica stretch of the M25 at RAF Wroughton, near Swindon. Manufactured from 457 diameter Circular Hollow Section, the eight gantries replicated those now installed at Dartford, complete with supporting structures for traffic lights, cameras and other electronic equipment. This facilitated trialling in preparation for major works to reconfigure the roads and traffic management systems.
Also within the Dartford Crossing vicinity, BS Steels surveyed, designed, manufactured and installed Stainless Steel brackets to support an existing 800 diameter Thames Water Pipe. This pipe is connected to the steel structure under ‘Bow Arrow Bridge’, part of the A282 connecting the M25 either side of the crossing. The pipe is also suspended over busy railway lines, making safe access a complex issue. BS Steels was commissioned by Balfour Beatty, and developed the design with Atkins.
Adur Ferry Bridge, Shoreham Harbour
An impressive new structure, with a 50-metre rotating central span, was opened in 2013, replacing the previous 1920s bridge. It accommodates pedestrians, cyclists and wheelchair/mobility scooter users.
BS Steels is proud to have been involved in what seems sure to become an iconic structure. Working with project leaders Osborne, BS Steels provided steel bracing to maintain the old bridge for traffic during early stage works on the replacement. We also provided various other on-site services, including extensive welding, cutting and fabrication. Our steel fabrication services were called upon to create both permanent and temporary platforms for piling rigs, and for access to all the main monopiles, including that supporting the central section. We also created the navigation light support brackets, and were called in to assist with manufacture and installation of the stainless steel balustrades.
The video gives an excellent introduction to the bridge and some of the engineering challenges met during the project, including tidal extremes of up to 7 metres!