An additional Motorway junction was required on the M54 in Staffordshire to service a new 91 hectare industrial, commercial and technology park constructed immediately to the south of the motorway. With space extremely limited main contractors Birse had to find a way to install the main access road, two elevated roundabouts and a motorway over-bridge together with attendant on and off slip roads, all within a slim corridor each side of the existing carriageways. To add further complication the construction had to work around the boundary fence of a nearby haulage yard and a high capacity gas main which could not be moved and had to remain operational throughout the build.
Main contractor Birse turned to Maccaferri to deliver a multi element design, supply and installation package comprising reinforced soil abutments to the overbridge using MacRes® concrete panels; steep sided slip road ramps constructed in Paragrid geogrid reinforced Green Terramesh® units and a further slip road ramp supported to one side by a retaining wall of stone filled Gabion baskets. Approximately 300 sqm of MacRes® concrete panels were used to construct the bridge abutment facings. These were installed in conjunction with Paraweb geogrid reinforcement placed between layers of compacted backfill. The 186m long eastbound off-slip and 35m long on-slip ramps running to the northern edge of the existing carriageway were constructed using steeply sloping opposing walls with layers of 5m length Paragrid® reinforcement and compacted backfill. The Green Terramesh® system promotes rapid establishment of vegetative cover which helped the site quickly blend in with the surrounding landscape. To slot the westbound access slip from the existing M54 Junction 2 between the haulage yard and the carriageway a 3m high,149m long Gabion wall was constructed.
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