Project outline

Murphy were appointed as the principal contractor by Network Rail on this bridge reconstruction project in Burnage, Manchester. Mauldeth Road underbridge is a 16-metre single span under-bridge carrying trains to and from Manchester Piccadilly and Heald Green over a busy single carriageway public road.

The existing bridge comprised of three main longitudinal built-up steel girders, supporting four secondary beams and associated lateral beams. The deck consisted of troughed early steel and wrought iron plates. The abutments were brickwork with each longitudinal girder supported on masonry abutment plinths.

This was replaced with U-type steel decks on new reinforced concrete cill beams. This meant the old track required removal with Murphy installing new conventional ballasted tracks.

Key challenges
  • The Mauldeth Road underbridge is located in a busy urban environment, meaning that early engagement with local residents and businesses was essential to build and foster good working relationships within the community.

  • The site team held drop-in evenings in the local church hall prior to commencement of the project, presenting details of the works, answering questions and providing information explaining the works and road closures and diversions. Early engagement and positive collaboration with the public fostered proactive responses from local businesses in managing potential risks such as customer and local travel routes leading up to and during possession, emergency access arrangements and access for site.

  • Limited access and isolations on lead-up possessions, meant that effective possession management was essential in making sure the project was delivered successfully, within the agreed programmed timescales.
Project delivery and innovations

Murphy delivered all civil reconstruction works on this project, including temporary work design. The team on site were responsible for managing all design, health, safety and environmental information between the client and subcontractors throughout the project. The presence of overhead electrified line structures created working restrictions that ruled out using the traditional mobile craneage method.

Before arriving on site there was an offsite trial erection of all the bridge elements to make sure of the dimensional accuracy of the permanent bridge installation. Murphy employed an independent fabrication inspector to inspect the structure, ensuring specification adherence of all elements.

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Murphy is a multi-disciplinary specialist in the Transportation sector, working across rail, highways, aviation and ports to deliver sustainable solutions. From renewals to electrification, bridge building, highways and aviation, our award-winning team has extensive experience.

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