News

Byrne Looby present to BGA on Shard of Glass

Mar 28, 2013

We are delighted to announce that our UK Director David Beadman will give a presentation to the British Geotechnical Association on the Shard on 10th April at 6pm at the Institution of Civil Engineer, One Great George Street, Westminister, London. David will present about the specialist foundation design for the project. Details of the talk from the BGA are included in the following paragraphs.

The Shard of Glass is a prominent new addition to the London Skyline which is notable for the high quality of engineering design employed for the foundations and sub-structure as well as the unusual superstructure. The construction of Western Europe’s tallest new building posed many challenges for the design team at WSP and the contractor's specialist designers such as Byrne Looby Partners. However, the impact of the building on the views across London was not the only issue that needed to be overcome before construction work could proceed. The land adjoining the Shard site is owned by Network Rail and is occupied by London Bridge Station which is one of the oldest and busiest train stations in London, if not the world. The designers of the Shard  worked with Network Rail and their advisors (Ramboll and Tony Gee & Partners) to enable work to proceed in a manner that was sensitive to the need to maintain the integrity of the station, the running train lines and extensive vault structures. 

The first part of the talk introduces the site and  the ground conditions, and the approach for the design of the foundations and sub-structure adopted by the team at WSP. This is followed by an outline of the extensive survey, review and assessment of the construction plans for the Shard carried out by Ramboll (formerly Gifford) in partnership with Tony Gee & Partners for Network Rail to provide confirmation that this vital transport interchange would not be damaged by the construction. Finally the 30MN preliminary pile test carried out on site is presented. The pile was instrumented in detail to record settlements and strains at various levels, enabling the mobilisation of shaft friction with settlement to be determined through the various strata.