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Engineering 'Oscar' For Walton Bridge

30 June 2014

Walton Bridge, a Costain project, has won another prestigious infrastructure award from the Institution of Civil Engineers (ICE).

Twenty-nine schemes worth a massive £660m had been shortlisted for the ICE’s Engineering Excellence South East England awards, including 14 projects competing for recognition in the Thames Valley.

The breadth of short-listed entries across South East England – covering everything from new road schemes, junction improvements, smart motorways, flood defences, water treatment, new water pipelines, iconic buildings, railway station upgrades, new bridges and river lock repairs - highlights the crucial work of civil engineers in helping tackle the region’s triple concerns of booming population, climate change, and ageing infrastructure. 

The A244 Walton Bridge took the top prize on the night, given to the best all round project and one that makes a significant positive impact in the region.

The award recognised an iconic structure that stands out in the landscape, while maintaining a vital community and commercial link carrying 34,000 vehicles and 600 pedestrians and cyclists daily. It is the first new Thames river road crossing for over twenty years. The project was funded by £24m from government, and £8m from Surrey County Council.

This latest success for Walton Bridge follows on from the Community Award received at the ICE London Awards in May 2014, with the two awards recognising a bridge that forms a vital Thames river crossing between the two ICE regions.

Commenting on the project, ICE Thames Valley Branch Chairman, Andrew Richards, said:

“The judges recognised immediately that this project was in a league of its own for Engineering Excellence.

“The new Walton Bridge has replaced two life-expired and rather ordinary bridges that carried 34,000 vehicles a day.   It is an iconic structure that stands out in the landscape making an engineering statement of its purpose.

“The single span steel arch design of the main bridge has a slim elegant appearance whilst providing an economic design for construction.

“The adoption of a single central temporary support during construction minimised the obstruction of river navigation and helped in the project’s economic achievement of being completed on time and to budget.

“The judges particularly noted that the project was completed with no accidents or reportable incidents.

“The project team’s community involvement included public site tours, school visits and support via the Rotary Club of the local Sea Cadets.

“The project team is to be heartily congratulated on this showpiece example of Civil Engineering at its best.”

At the end of the evening, ICE Regional Director John Laverty, said: “We’ve been delighted with the quality and range of this year’s entries, which demonstrate how civil engineering has a huge impact on our lives. Whenever we turn on a tap, get on a train, drive down the road, or see buildings and structures that makes our towns and cities better places to live, civil engineers have made that possible. We hope these awards go some way to reflect that.”


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