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14 September 2017

Installation of one of Europe's largest bridges

Battersea Power Station is pleased to announce that the team has successfully installed the largest Retro Light Bridge ever to be erected in the UK as part of the ongoing works on the 42-acre redevelopment project. 

The 264 tonne bridge, which measures a total length of 53 metres and 11 metres wide, is one of the largest temporary bridges of its type in Europe. It will facilitate access for Circus West residents at Battersea Power Station and reduce the interface with construction traffic during the ongoing site works. 

The programme ran ahead of schedule, with the bridge being installed during a 48-hour road closure and a day of pre-assembly. 14 sections were lifted into place using a Liebherr LTM 1500 Mobile Crane, which has a maximum lifting capacity of 500 tonnes. The first section of the bridge was installed just before midnight on Friday with the upper, shorter span (21 metres) being installed by the end of Saturday morning. The larger span (32 metres) was installed during Saturday night and bolted up throughout Sunday. Over 20 operatives were involved in the successful execution of the works. 

A single spanning 21 metre header beam was required to support the bridge deck due to the layout of the underpass below and support positions – this size of header beam is unique to this project. The header beam supports the bridge where the two spans meet and is in turn supported on two standard Retro Bridge modular towers, each with a safe working load in excess of 300 tonnes. 

One of the key advantages of the Retro Light Bridge system is its lightweight steel structure which is easy to transport, quick to construct and delivers low cost, quicker to build foundations. The temporary bridge will be re-used on future projects as it is formed from modular components, making it a highly sustainable solution. Furthermore, no maintenance is required when the bridge is in use, which avoids the cost and disruption of short-term closures required for more traditional temporary bridge solutions; this delivers significant benefits for bridge users and other stakeholders. 

Mike Grice, Chief Construction Officer, at Battersea Power Station Development Company said: 

“This is a real achievement for the Battersea team and all of our contractors who have worked tirelessly to install this bridge as quickly as possible to avoid disruption to the residents and site works. The combination of extensive knowledge and expertise among all involved ensured this process ran smoothly and the bridge being successfully assembled and erected in what is a relatively constrained site area.” 

Alex Cole, Managing Director at Retro Bridge Group, added: 

“We are delighted that the bridge installation went so well. This is a testament to the two and a half years of planning that led up to this weekend, the collaborative approach adopted by all parts of the project delivery team, and the positive can-do attitude always adopted by our supply chain partners and site teams. The Retro Light Bridge system represents the latest in modular bridge designs and we are pleased that it will play a small part in the successful delivery of such a prestigious project.” 

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