Shropshire firm bridging the gap with road replacement project

An important overwater transport artery in the north west of Scotland is being upgraded with the aid of the first UK installation of an innovative, internationally-renowned type of modular steel bridge.

Shrewsbury-based Beaver Bridge Hire has been called upon to provide one of its Unibridge temporary bridges to aid with the £1.8 million replacement of the A82 Allt Chonoglais Bridge, just outside the village of Bridge of Orchy in Argyll and Bute.

Morrison Construction has been tasked with replacing the A82 Allt Chonoglais Bridge as part of Transport Scotland’s Bridge Strengthening Programme. The year-long project will first see the removal of the existing deck, abutments and piers, before it is replaced with a new structure incorporating a composite steel and concrete single-span bridge deck.

To enable traffic to continue to flow whilst the construction work is taking place, Beaver Bridge Hire will erect a temporary bridge for the duration of the project. Its Unibridge model is a French-manufactured, internationally-renowned modular steel structure which combines durability with ease of installation.

“The Unibridge is made up of a series of 11.4 metre and 6 metre long beams, along with connecting pins, spacers, and decking,” Henry Beaver, Operations Director of Shrewsbury-based Beaver Bridge Hire, the sole UK agent for Unibridge, explained. “Compared to similar forms of structure, it has a vastly reduced number of components, ensuring it is easy to install, expand, dismantle, and reassemble. In fact, whereas most types of temporary bridge required for projects such as this will take up to 10 days to install, the Unibridge can be up within three.”

In addition to its easy installation, the Unibridge is the only type of modular bridge that can be fitted with a composite metal-concrete deck, although in this instance an all-steel deck with anti-skid is being used. It is also designed and manufactured to comply with Eurocode design load now used throughout the UK.

“With a major project such as this, speed is of the essence,” Ian Mackay, Construction Manager for Morrison Construction, commented. “Due to the modular format of the Unibridge that Beaver Bridge Hire is supplying us with, installation will be carried out within a matter of days, enabling our team to proceed with the demolition of the present bridge.”

Beaver Bridge Hire is a Shropshire-based temporary bridge specialist working with a broad variety of UK and Europe-wide clients, from government agencies and multinational construction firms, right the way through to private land owners simply wishing to access their house or plot of land. With a team of fully qualified transporters, designers and engineers, the company’s comprehensive product range includes Pedestrian Bridges, Standard Road-Going Vehicle Bridges, Short Span Vehicle Bridges (SSVB), and Heavy Duty Vehicle Bridges. It is also the sole UK agent for Unibridge, an innovative, French-manufactured, easy to install range of modular steel bridges. Internationally-renowned and used across five continents, Unibridge structures have been installed in projects as diverse as road building, natural disasters and emergencies, construction sites, and humanitarian crises.