Balfour Beatty completes M54 bridge lift

Balfour Beatty has lifted a new 400-ton bridge into place over the M54 motorway.

The company carried out the work as part of a £12 million project to connect a new high-tech business park to the road network and to provide access for the new Jaguar Land Rover plant.

The bridge, which will serve the i54 business park in South Staffordshire, was delivered for Staffordshire County Council, Wolverhampton City Council and South Staffordshire Council, as part of the Midlands Highways Alliance framework.

The lift was carried out during a full road closure overnight on Saturday 11 January. Balfour Beatty raised the bridge to the required height at its site compound adjacent to the motorway and then transported it along the M54 on self-propelled modular transport units so that it could be slotted into position.

The bridge is a composite structure comprising of four 1,550mm weathered steel beams underneath an in-situ concrete deck, which weighs 411 tonnes with a span length of 40.8m. The bridge deck was constructed on site, using beams supplied by Mabey Bridge. Pre-assembly of the beams and deck at Balfour Beatty’s site compound prior to the lift reduced the amount of time the motorway needed to be closed for installation.

Mark Farrah, Balfour Beatty managing director for the North and Midlands division, said: “This was a complex operation and the smooth delivery was the result of meticulous planning by Staffordshire County Council and the Balfour Beatty project team on site.”

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