The mammoth project to strengthen Tinsley Viaduct, the UK's first ever double-deck steel box girder bridge, has won the Major Project category of the BCIA (British Construction Industry Awards) 2005. The award was presented to lead designers Owen Williams Consultants, the Highways Agency and project contractor Edmund Nuttall.
The scheme is one of the most challenging engineering projects to be undertaken over the past decade, providing the team with a host of complex engineering issues. The most significant challenge facing the team was the strengthening of 34 load-bearing diaphragms in the cross boxes on the lower deck – this was overcome with the extensive use of finite element analysis and sophisticated inspection techniques.
The judges commented "This project combined innovation and effective management, both to save money and provide a replacement viaduct which will benefit road users and the community alike."
The project, employing over 250 workers at its height, has required over 2,500 tonnes of reinforcing steel to be carefully and painstakingly welded and bolted into the structure, along with significant quantities of reinforced concrete and over 100km of welding. The work was all completed within highly confined spaces, at height, and whilst keeping the M1 motorway and the A631 truck road operational - all of which created further challenges to the team.
The BCIA award follows the project winning first prize at this year’s Institution of Structural Engineers Design Excellence Award 2005.