HS2 employs novel piling method for sleek new viaduct

Piling work has begun on one of HS2’s most spectacular engineering features yet - the low 500-yard, nine-span Wendover Dean Viaduct in Buckinghamshire.

Keen to promote its environmental-conscious approach, HS2 Ltd has highlighted the novel approach to its construction. 

A total of 53 concrete piles will be needed for the foundations of the support piers. But instead of them being hammered into the ground, holes up to 150ft deep will be bored during the summer. 

The piers, some up to 45ft high, will be cast as shells before being assembled on site and filled with concrete. The first 150ft-long spans will be lifted onto them next year. 

The beams themselves will be made from weathering steel, which will age to dark russet. When viewed from a distance, the pale concrete parapet will appear as a thin horizontal band hovering over the slender piers.

Its location is between Wendover and South Heath, running north from the Chiltern Tunnel. Its maximum height will be around 65ft from ground level, and it is designed for 225mph trains.

To read the full story, see RAIL 962.

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