Engineers For New Clyde Swing Bridge Named

The new crossing over the Clyde is to be the centrepiece of the Clyde Waterfront and Renfrew Riverside project.

Irish civil engineering firm Roughan & O’Donovan will be partnering up with New York-headquartered bridge giant Hardesty & Hanover to provide ‘comprehensive movable bridge engineering design services’ for the construction of the first opening road bridge over the River Clyde, it has been announced.

The Daily Record reports that the new crossing over the Clyde is to be the centrepiece of the Clyde Waterfront and Renfrew Riverside project, which aims to transform the waterfront, and connect communities on both sides of the river, as well as improve access to jobs, education, healthcare, and create new connections into Scotland’s manufacturing innovation district.

Leading the design-build project will be construction and civil engineering company, GRAHAM, with Hollandia Infra, lemants, Ramboll, Amey, Hycom Engineering, and Fairfield Control Systems amongst the other members of the project team.

The 184m double cable-stayed swing bridge will connect Renfrew to Clydebank and Yoker and will carry vehicles, cyclists, and pedestrians. It has been designed by architect Tony Kettle of the Kettle collective, who is better known for creating the Falkirk Wheel, a rotating boat lift that connects the Forth and Clyde Canal with the Union Canal.

The elegant and structurally efficient swing bridge will allow for cyclist and pedestrian-friendly gradients on the bridge while also providing a significant navigational opening. The 12.3m wide bridge deck contains two carriageways and two pedestrian footpaths.

The double swing bridge, spanning 130m pivot to pivot, which features 6.7 metre-diameter slewing bearings, has an asymmetrical, or ‘bobtail’ arrangement with a 65m forward span and a 27m back span.

The steel superstructures spans are gear-driven, hydraulically powered, and open at a 110° angle, and the forward superstructure is is supported by cable-stays anchored to steel pylons and a counterweighted back span.

The project has already received planning consent, and detailed design and construction are scheduled to begin in spring, and expected to take three years to complete.

Hardesty & Hanover lent their engineering services to the replacement of the Kosciuszko Bridge, the two-span cable-stayed structure that is 1.1-miles-long and carries 160,000 vehicles per day over the Brooklyn-Queens Expressway.

Hardesty & Hanover’s Paul Skelton said: “Our well-honed partnership with ROD is emblematic of our approach to designing complex kinetic structures.

“Our structural, mechanical, and electrical/controls specialists design collaboratively to ensure that the bridge and its machinery function as one. This will bring to life an elegant and unique bridge that offers pedestrians and cyclists a less-steep journey across the Clyde while also providing a significant opening for marine traffic.”

ROD’s Tony Dempsey said: “We have been collaborating with H&H for the past 15 years and we are delighted to be working with Paul and the team again on this our latest success. It continues our established relationship in the UK and Ireland.”

The new £90 million plan is part of a wider project which is expected to create more than 2,300 jobs and bring £867 million into the local economy.

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