Hunter engineering and project management firm, Bridge and Civil, has taken out the top gong for projects between $2 million and $5 million at the Civil Contractors Federation (CCF) National Earth Awards for their innovative approach to working on complex sites, which started at a skate shop in Newcastle’s East End.
Bridge and Civil General Manager, Shannon Drewe said embracing innovation and future thinking was the business as usual approach for his team and that inspiration can come from the simplest things, and in this case it was a skateboard.
“We were engaged by Australian Rail Track Corporation (ARTC) to replace and repair rail structures across 56 sites throughout the Hunter Valley,” he said.
“The sites had lots of challenges including working at heights, repetitive manual handling in a restrictive workspace, working over waterways and working under live rail traffic.
“A key element of the project was the installation of walkways on Hunter River bridges at Kooragang and Singleton to provide safe access for bridge inspections. We developed a full-scale 3D model of the bridge to help identify challenges and consider alternative ways to complete the installation.”
Bridge and Civil’s initial idea was to repurpose an electric skateboard into a trolley. But thanks to the staff at East End Skate, they were able to collaborate with Catavolt to develop an autonomous trolley and trailer to traverse the length of the new walkway, which carried components as they were assembled.
“We were able to significantly reduce the number of people required to complete the build, work outside of rail closures, reduce the build time from ten months during scheduled rail possession to six consecutive weeks and reduce manual handling to mitigate the risk of injury,” Shannon said.
ARTC Project Manager, Matthew Stone, commended Bridge and Civil on the way they delivered this project and congratulated them on this well-deserved win.
“It was great to see Shannon and the rest of the Bridge and Civil team plan, consult and develop an innovative and effective approach to mitigate the risks associated with these complex work sites,” he said.
The National Earth Awards recognise excellence in civil construction and are considered the most prestigious award in Australian civil infrastructure.
CCF Chief Executive Officer, Chris Melham, says the win in the category for projects valued between $2 million and $5 million, and being one of six category winners from over 42 finalists for civil construction projects across the country, is a testament to Bridge and Civil.
“The awards showcase businesses performing at the highest level and this project was the only rail project to progress from the state to the national awards. In fact, it was the only rail project to win a national award which is a fantastic achievement,” Chris said.
The project, now complete, will contribute to track safety and reliability across more than 300km of ARTC’s Hunter Valley rail network.
The project partners that made the win possible include; ARTC, Catavolt, NTJ, Midcoast Engineering and Fabrication, NR Rushbrook Consulting and Solid Engineering.
IMAGE | Bridge and Civil team receiving top gong at Civil Contractors Federation (CCF) National Earth Awards
Bridge and Civil is a Hunter-based engineering and project management firm. Formed in 2010, Bridge and Civil has established themselves as a contractor with a credible track record in the construction industry, completing road and rail projects in NSW, QLD and Victoria.
The founders, Bob Simpkins, John Burke and Allan Goldman have more than 100 years’ experience between them and are supported by an experienced staff of rail track experts, bridge construction foremen, crane and plant operators and a team of construction carpenters.