A VolkerLaser led project team working on a weekend possession on the M4 was able to re-open the motorway earlier than scheduled despite adverse weather conditions.
The bridges between Junctions 12 and 13 of the M4, Tanners Copse, Furze Hill and Frilsham Manor, needed to be upgraded with the removal and replacement of defective central beams and the installation of new elastomeric bridge bearings.
Detailed planning and programming was undertaken by the team, led by project manager, Andy Weeks, alongside Kier, Chevron and Highways England. The decision was made for individual team members to take a lead role on each of the bridges as work was to be done simultaneously.
Following the hydro demolition, final checks were made to ensure the recesses were the correct size for the new beams to be installed. All three bridges were successfully installed on Saturday 9 December and the reinforcement couplers were connected. Safety critical strengthening works to the back of the hard shoulder, totalling a length of 1.5km, completed the weekend works and allowed the motorway to be reopened 22 hours earlier than scheduled.
Andrew Winson from Highways England said: “My thanks go to VolkerLaser, Kier, Chevron and all the other supply chain partners for working together to reopen the M4 to traffic early. This shows that they share Highways England's customer imperative that has gone into the heart of their planning. The early opening has been achieved despite adverse weather conditions and that is testament to your determination.”
The VolkerLaser team will remain on site at the M4 into the New Year, continuing with refurbishment works and the installation of a new VRS (vehicle restraint system). The project is set to be completed in July 2018.