neaco’s Techdek aluminium open grille system has been specified as decking for pedestrian or cycle ways at some of the UK’s most prestigious bridge schemes designed by WilkinsonEyre. High-profile projects include the Living Bridge in Limerick, the Peace Bridge in Londonderry, the Sterling Prize-winning Gateshead Millennium Bridge, the Twin Sails Bridge in Poole and the Media City Footbridge in Manchester. Techdek’s T-Bar profile provides a 74 per cent contact area on the surface yet drains water efficiently and its swage-locked construction between the bars enables high structural efficiency. Those qualities – combined with a maintenance-free durability and the option of a serrated anti-slip surface for increased safety – make Techdek ideal for the external conditions and high traffic demands of a bridge.
Techdek bridge decking was extensively installed on the Living Bridge, at the University of Limerick, to form a curvaceous deck sweeping across the River Shannon and its embankments in six spans between strategically positioned support locations. The bridge’s deck width pulses along its length, offering wider platforms for use as resting places or spaces for public art.
The Peace Bridge was conceived as a landmark cross the River Foyle in Derry-Londonderry linking historically divided communities on the east and west banks.The bridge deck is divided into two curved halves, each supported by the suspension system from a single inclined steel pylon. At the centre of the river, the structural systems overlap to form a ‘structural handshake.’
The choice of Techdek as cycleway decking played a part in the visual impact of Gateshead Millennium Bridge’s dramatic opening motion in which two arches – one forming the deck, the other supporting it – pivot around their springing point to allow shipping to pass beneath. Techdek’s unique profile which allowed the appearance of the bridge to change with the angle of viewing.
Techdek was also integral to the signature feature of the Twin Sails Bridge in Poole Harbour designed. Configured as a simple bascule, the joint between the bridge’s two hydraulically lifted sections is skewed across a flat deck, creating two triangular sail shapes which cross as they rise and come to rest in an overlapping composition, mirroring the shape of racing yachts passing through the bridge. Techdek grillage has been installed on both sail sections which form a sculptural piece when lifted into a vertical position.
The Media City footbridge forms a visual landmark and sculptural gateway to the Media City site in Salford Quays, connecting it with satellite developments and attractions on the southern side of the Manchester Ship Canal. The curved, 100m-long deck of the bridge responds to the radial masterplan of the site and reinforces an orbital pedestrian route around the canal basin.
neaco’s national sales manager, Peter Melia, comments: “Bridge developments have become a major market for our Techdek system and we are proud to have the product serving some of the most creative aspects of the UK’s landmark bridge projects. In addition to its many practical qualities, Techdek provides a high architectural aesthetic that is manufactured to last.”