Graham Group has installed a 360t offsite-manufactured steel approach bridge as part of its £106m project to expand the port of Tilbury in Essex.
Graham won the contract for both the terrestrial and marine packages of the new development in September, starting works in March this year.
The fixed structural steel bridge, measuring 54m x 15m x 5m, is the first of three components to be installed to create a roll-on, roll-off facility at the new terminal.
It was manufactured in Rotterdam before being towed 135 nautical miles on a pontoon and lifted into place using a seagoing crane with a 1800t lifting capacity.
Graham Group is due to complete both packages of works by June 2020.
Paul Scott, contracts director for GRAHAM, said: “We have hit another milestone on this major project with the arrival and installation of the approach bridge.
“It was a real team effort from the loading out at Ravestein’s BV yard through to the installation.
“The approach bridge is positioned from abutments on both the landside of the flood defence and on the foreshore.”
The Tilbury2 project consists of the construction of a new port terminal and associated facilities on land at the former Tilbury power station on the north bank of the River Thames at Tilbury. When operational, Tilbury2 will be the UK’s largest unaccompanied freight ferry port, the country’s biggest construction processing hub and will see the creation of a new significantly larger rail head which can accommodate the longest freight trains of 775m.
The project is central to the Port of Tilbury’s £1bn investment programme during 2012-20, which has seen it double the size of its business in the past 10 years and is projected to double the volume of cargo across the quay (from 16 million to 32 million tonnes) and increase direct employment (from 3,500 to 12,000 jobs) over the next 10-15 years.
Peter Ward, commercial director at The Port of Tilbury, said: “This is another important milestone in the creation of our new port Tilbury2.
“Graham’s team successfully completed the link span fixed bridge installation and we look forward to seeing the bridge opened early next year.”