The contract involved the upgrade of McWhirter’s User Worked Crossing on the main Ballymena to Ballymoney rail line just outside Ballymena on behalf of Northern Ireland Railways. The work also included associated roadway construction and service diversion.
The initial stage of the project required the construction of 85m of asphalt road and 180m of reinforced concrete laneway as part of the accommodation work for the bridge replacement. The accommodation works also provides improved access and connectivity between the local areas either side of the rail line.
Prior to the demolition of the existing bridge we carried out work in preparation for the diversion of the existing water and telecoms that had been carried by the old bridge.
Working in close consultation with Northern Ireland Railways demolition of the existing bridge deck was carefully planned and coordinated to minimise disruption to local rail services. The safe sectional removal of the existing bridge deck was carried out under a night time rail possession utilising a 200T mobile crane. The existing bank seats were also demolished.
Two new bank seats were cast on the existing abutments and a precast reinforced concrete slab was lifted into place and acted as a permanent in-situ formwork for the bridge deck pour. Two additional precast slabs were installed to act as formwork to new approach slabs required as part of the contract.
The in-situ concrete deck pour was then carried out completing the structural deck of the new bridge. The new deck was structural tied into the concrete section of the of the new bridge parapets
The design of the new bridge parapets required that a 6” water main be cast within one and a 4” telecoms be incorporated within the other. Building on our considerable experience of similar work minimal disruption was caused to the continuity of supply.
A new N2 parapet was installed on top of the new concrete parapet improving the crossings safety for both road and rail users.