Pylon lifted on Sunderland bridge scheme

February 15 2017   | Region: North East & Cumbria

Pylon lifted on Sunderland bridge scheme
Sunderland’s New Wear Crossing construction project has reached its most important milestone to date with a successful lifting operation that saw the scheme’s 1550t centrepiece tower raised into position over the weekend.
The 100m tall A-frame pylon now stands higher than Big Ben over the River Wear. The lift took nearly 16 hours to complete and marked the culmination of two years of design and planning, including 12 months needed to fabricate the structure at a factory in Belgium.
As reported by Transportation Professional in its March issue, the pylon was transported to site by river in January after arriving from Belgium at the Port of Sunderland.
“The transportation of the pylon from the fabrication yard in Belgium and the raising on site have been challenging, but we planned well and the result was a successful operation,” said construction joint venture FVB’s project director Stephen McCaffrey.
The New Wear Crossing is being delivered by the joint venture of Farrans Construction and Victor Buyck Steel Construction for Sunderland City Council.
Stephen McCaffrey added: “We could have built the pylon on site from the ground up but we chose to fabricate it in one go, off site, in a factory environment because we had better control over conditions, got a better quality of finish and could avoid having people working at height.”
Sunderland City Council leader Paul Watson commented: “Seeing the pylon raised into position, standing high above the River Wear, makes me feel very proud. It also gives us a real indication of the impact this bridge is going to have on Sunderland.”
When complete next year the New Wear Crossing will be a cable stayed, two lane dual carriageway road bridge, improving the important transport links to the city centre and Port of Sunderland from the A19 and A1.
Upcoming phases of work will see the bridge deck launched out across the river in spring and efforts to connect the cable stays begin in the spring.

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