Complex preparation work has been completed as work continues on the construction of HS2’s Marston Box bridge over the M42.
Balfour Beatty VINCI (BBV) worked around the clock to deliver the operation in just seven days.
The BBV team replaced the existing surface of the motorway to create a three metre deep cutting.
The team also installed and connected new drainage, created foundations and improved the stability of the ground to support the weight of the ground.
The work was carried out to facilitate the UK’s first ‘box slide’ of a railway bridge over a motorway.
This technique involves building the bridge on the land next to the motorway and using a guide raft to slide it into place.
The 10,000 tonne bridge will have a base, three walls and a top slab and is set to be built over the coming months.
David Speight, Client Project Director at HS2 commented on the innovation being used to construct the bridge.
Mr Speight said: “By using pioneering innovations like the box-slide technique, HS2 is improving both the safety and speed of works on the project.
“This was a complex and intricately planned groundwork operation, with a huge amount of work carried out by the teams during just one week.
“The successful delivery is testament to the skills and expertise of over 100 people in the BBV team, along with their specialist supply chain companies.”
The bridge was originally designed as a traditional structure which would’ve caused significant disruption to the motorway for around two years.
Emmanuel Costes, Project Director at BBV spoke on how BBV and HS2 are working to minimise disruption whilst the work takes place.
Mr Costes said: “Wherever we operate, we always seek to minimise disruption to local communities and the travelling public.
“With preparatory works now complete, we are looking forward to utilising our deep-domain knowledge and expertise to successfully complete the ‘box-slide’ later this year.”
Once built the Marston Box bridge will join to Dunton Wood Embankment to the south and the Birmingham and Fazeley Canal Viaduct to the north.