M O’Brien Civil Engineering play vital part in Worlds longest box slide for HS2 and BBV.

After completing the initial preparation works for the record breaking Marston box bridge over the 2021 Christmas break, the M O’Brien Civil engineering team returned to the M42 this year to support Balfour Beatty Vinci working on behalf of HS2, to slide the 12,600 tonne bridge structure a distance of 165 meters into its final position over the M42 motorway.

M O’Brien undertook all earthworks and drainage activities, excavating the route and building the mat in which the box would slide across before reinstating the motorway and verges to allow the motorway to be reopened 36 hours ahead of schedule.

The Marston box bridge was completed in partnership between HS2 and National highways to deliver the intricate operation to both rail and motorway specifications. The build of the structure took 6 months to complete, and 40 hours to slide into position, delivering the works over a course of a 10 day road closure offering minimum disruption to road users when compared with traditional construction methods which would have seen the road closed for over 12 months.

On completion, the whole structure will be around 190 metres in length, and will carry HS2 over the motorway as it heads north to Crewe, or on its southward journey as it loops into Birmingham Curzon Street or continues straight on to Interchange Station in Solihull, Old Oak Common Station and London Euston. Once built, the railway bridge will connect to Dunton Wood Embankment to the south and the Birmingham and Fazeley Canal Viaduct, which crosses the heritage canal, to the north.

M O’Brien is very proud of the works carried out, and the trust that Balfour Beatty Vinci joint venture placed in our team to deliver these time critical works over the 10 day motorway possession. The works being carried out efficiently and safely throughout the duration. Utilising the M O’Brien Plant Hire equipment and the 8 wheel tipper’s from Ashvale Haulage, the works pulled together some of the groups best resources for the delivery of this impressive feat of engineering.

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