VolkerFitzpatrick awarded £59 million contract to upgrade the Tame Valley Viaduct

VolkerFitzpatrick has won a £59 million contract from Birmingham City Council to provide strengthening and refurbishment works to the A38(M) Tame Valley Viaduct, which currently carries around 80,000 vehicles a day and links the M6 to the city centre.

Built in the early 1970s, the 620m long composite viaduct, which forms the northern end of the A38(M) Aston Expressway near Spaghetti Junction has started to show signs of deterioration, and this upgrade is deemed vital to maintain the longevity, safety and functionality of the structure. Works will start this month to strengthen and refurbish the viaduct, which is 25 metres wide and carries seven lanes of traffic over 22 spans.

The viaduct’s superstructure will be strengthened via the addition of steel plates, secured in position using a combination of welding and bolting. In addition to strengthening, anti-corrosion paint will be applied to the structure, alongside other refurbishment works to help preserve the viaduct’s longevity and minimise the need for future work.

Deon Scholtz, operations director for VolkerFitzpatrick’s Infrastructure division said: ‘We are delighted to have been appointed by Birmingham City Council to carry out much needed works to upgrade and improve the Tame Valley Viaduct. This is a vital part of Birmingham’s road network, and we look forward to working with the council to provide an integrated solution that achieves high levels of technical capability and service, leading to a safe, successful project completion.’

Cllr Liz Clements, Cabinet Member for Transport at Birmingham City Council commented: “This is a significant investment into a key piece of our city’s highways infrastructure. If we are to ensure people can move around the city as easy as possible and help business flourish, it is vital we carry out projects like this.”

The viaduct will remain open during the works. To enable this, VolkerFitzpatrick will be using high level access platforms spanning from pier to pier. As the structure spans significant infrastructure, including live electrified rail lines, the River Tame, main roads and local businesses, VolkerFitzpatrick will be taking steps to maximise safety on site, to engage with the local community and to minimise any environmental impact from the works.

They will provide employment opportunities over the course of the scheme and run a number of recruitment days in partnership with local groups. As well as working with supply chain contractors from the surrounding area, they will engage with local secondary schools, colleges and youth charities and provide a minimum of seven apprenticeship placements. VolkerFitzpatrick will also be working with a number of homelessness charities, running sponsorship events and supporting green landscape initiatives being promoted by local groups over the four and a half year project.

(Picture – VolkerFitzpatrick)

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