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New bridge by-passes Barford

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Rowecord Engineering has recently completed the fabrication and erection of a 120m–long bridge serving the new Barford bypass in Warwickshire.

The structure consists of 350t of steel, with girders sitting on reinforced concrete supports, traversing a river and floodplain on the village’s western perimeter.

Danny Brown, Site Agent for main contractor Galliford Try said the problem this created was that normally a bridge would be supported on dry banks with a spanning beam just sitting there, but here all the ground was totally sodden.

To combat this, a temporary hardstanding was first put down on the floodplain to support plant equipment before a comprehensive piling programme was carried out.

Ian Hoppe, Bridges Director for Rowecord, said a crawler crane was used to lift the majority of steel as this type of machine spreads its load better than a telescopic crane with outriggers. “We lifted all the steel beams individually except the section over the river,” he added.

This 32m-long section was assembled adjacent to the site and lifted in two pairs of braced girders, each weighing 51t.

To lift these bridge sections an 800t capacity mobile crane was used and this was positioned on the southern abutment of the structure. “Luckily we found a position for this big piece of kit, as it would have been to difficult to construct hardstanding and foundations for it,” Mr Brown said.

Steelwork for the bridge was completed in September and the bypass is due to open in early 2007.

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