by Tiana May
31 Jan 2023
HS2 Ltd’s main works contractor, Align JV has installed the last of 292 concrete piles, forming the foundations for the UK’s longest railway bridge at the site of HS2’s Colne Valley Viaduct.
Once complete, the 2.1-mile bridge will carry the high-speed rail line over a collection of lakes and waterways on the north-west outskirts of London.
In parallel to the construction of the foundations, work has also commenced on 56 piers and the deck. More than 500 meters of the viaduct structure is now complete.
“Once complete, HS2 will transform journeys across the UK, help to boost the economy and support the UK’s transition to net zero.
“The completion of the piling for the Colne Valley Viaduct is a major achievement for our whole team and marks the end of almost two years of hard work. With pier construction and deck assembly also well underway, the viaduct is fast becoming one of the most impressive and recognisable parts of the project.”
To deliver 66 piles in the lakebed, the team had to construct over a kilometre of temporary jetties. These jetties are also used to transport materials during the construction of the piers and viaduct deck to keep vehicles off local roads.
Some of the piles are installed up to 60 metres deep into the ground. On top of each group, a concrete pile cap will support the pier, which will hold the weight of the bridge structure above.
The main deck of the viaduct is being built in 1,000 separate segments at a temporary factory nearby. The structure is then assembled using a bridge-building machine that lifts each piece into position before shifting itself forward to the next pier.
“Completing the piling is a great achievement for both Align and the team at KVJV, working over the lakes and waterways across the Colne Valley. We were able to complete the piling with no significant impact on the environment, a great result for the whole team.”
Over 40bn GBP will be invested in the UK's transport network over the next two years, with a focus on delivering the first phase of HS2.
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Birmingham City Council has granted planning permission approval for HS2's Washwood Heath Depot, north-east of Birmingham city centre.
HS2's tunnel boring machines, Florence and Cecilia have passed the halfway point on their 10-mile journey excavating the Chiltern tunnels.
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Construction of the Colne Valley Viaduct has now started, overseen by HS2’s main works contractor Align JV.
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The first of 56 giant concrete piers for the Colne Valley Viaduct has been cast. Once complete, this will be the UK's longest rail bridge.
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HS2 has cast the first of 112,000 wall segments for the high-speed railway's 10-mile Chiltern tunnel outside of London.
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The tunnel boring machines that will excavate the HS2 Chiltern tunnel will be equipped with robotic arms to help with the concrete segments.
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