eBridges 2021 Preliminary Programme

The latest details can be found below, but please check regularly for updates...

Day 1 Wednesday 26th May - Keynotes & Stream A

12:00 - 13:00

Meet & Greet

13:00 - 13.15

Introduction from chair

Jose Maria Sanchez de Muniain, Editor Bridge design & engineering,

13.15 - 13.30

Bd&e Presents...

13.30 - 14.00

Keynote: The design of the Gordie Howe International Bridge

Upon completion the 2.5km-long cable-stayed crossing between Canada and US will be among the top five longest bridges in North America.

The joint presentation will cover architectural design development and visual quality considerations; structural design overview including foundation, tower, and the superstructure type selections; specific design challenges including aerodynamics, stay cable design, redundancy and durability considerations; as well as construction sequence, schedule and latest status update.

Speakers :
Steven L Stroh, Senior Vice President, AECOM Erik Behrens, Practice Director Architecture, AECOM

14.00 - 14.20

Structural topology optimization of steel girders in cable-supported bridges

Girder design for suspension bridges has remained largely unchanged for the past 60 years. However, for future super-long bridges, aiming at record-breaking spans beyond 3 km, the girder weight is a limiting factor. From the application of topology optimization, a method to identify material-efficient structures, a new girder design concept is proposed, demonstrating possible weight savings in excess of 28 percent while maintaining manufacturability.

Mads Baandrup, structural engineer, COWI, Denmark

Mads Baandrup, Structural Engineer, COWI Denmark

15:25 - 15:30

Bd&e Presents...

15:30 - 15:50

Rochester Bridge – a once-in-a-generation refurbishment project

Sue Threader, Bridge Clerk & Chief Executive, Rochester Bridge Trust

15:50 - 16.10

Forthcoming CIRIA guidance on the assessment of masonry arch bridges (LIVE)

In this exclusive preview delegates will hear the key elements of new guidance by the Construction Industry Research and Information Association. Due to appear later in 2021, the guidance includes the use of a new Permissible Limit State (PLS) to confirm service load performance. Also covered will be outstanding issues and future research needs.

Matthew Gilbert, Director of the Integrated Civil and Infrastructure Research (ICAIR) Centre, University of Sheffield

16:10 - 16.30

Wendover Eden Viaduct: Seeking the extraordinary

Tomas Garcia, Head of Civil Structures, HS2

16:30 - 17:30

Meet & Greet

Day 1 - Stream B

15:30 - 15:50

The New Burnshot Bridge

In 2020 the new Burnshot Bridge over the A90 near Kirkliston in Edinburgh opened to traffic. A monitoring scheme, funded by the Scottish Road Research Board, was installed from construction to investigate the behaviour and performance against Eurocode design assumptions. The new scheme monitors embedded strain measurements in precast pre-tensioned beams; displacements of buried supporting columns; creep of new concrete construction; and thermal movement of integral skewed deck structure.


Speakers :
Dave Cousins, Principal Engineer, James Fisher Testing Services Stephen Knox, Transport Manager – Structures & Flood Prevention, City of Edinburgh Council

15:50 - 16.10


16:10 - 16:30


Day 1 - Workshop

14:25 - 15.25

Workshop #1: Digital technology for inspections and monitoring

Network Rail manage a large portfolio of bridge structures across the network that require continued and varying levels of examination, assessment, maintenance and repair/renewal. Methods for recording and monitoring of structures condition are subjective which leads to inconsistencies in the reports received.

The desire is to move towards a more digital approach which enables a more context-based and holistic view of the asset and its surrounding environment; reliable/measurable/comparable and non-subjective data on assets; data driven workflows and deliverables to facilitate detailed analysis and reporting; and an enabler to facilitate future aspirations to use artificial intelligence for defect recognition.

During the workshop delegates will be encouraged to discuss current approaches, including their limitations and shortcomings, as well as consider future needs and potential technologies that could improve existing practices.

Mark Greatrix, Director - Head Digital & Technologies, Waldeck

Day 1 - Bridges Awards

17:30 - 18:00

Bridges Awards 2021

Discover the winners of this year's inaugural Bridges Awards in the categories:

  • Bridges Design Awards - projects above £5 million
  • Bridges Design Awards - projects under £5 million
  • Bridges Construction Awards - projects above £5 million
  • Bridges Construction Awards - projects under £5 million
  • Bridges Award for New Life - projects above £5 million
  • Bridges Award for New Life - projects under £5 million
  • Bridges Management Award

The judging panel for the Bridges Awards 2021 is chaired by José María Sánchez de Muniáin, editor of Bridge design & engineering magazine, and is formed by:

  • Joanna Bonnet, Vice President, Cowi UK
  • Keith Brownlie, Director, Brownlie Ernst and Marks
  • Kevin Dentith, Chair, Association of Directors of Environment, Economy, Planning and Transport
  • Richard Fish, Technical Secretary, Bridge Owners Forum
  • Colin Hall, Network Rail
  • Daniel Healey, Principal Engineer - Highway Structures Unit, Transport NI
  • Jason Hibbert, Head of Structures, Network Management Division, Department for Economy and Infrastructure, Welsh Government
  • Neil Loudon, Group Manager Structures, Highways England
  • Hazel McDonald, Chief Bridge Engineer (Head of Structures), Transport Scotland

Visit the Bridges Awards website here

Day 2 Thursday 27th May - Keynotes & Stream A

8:00 - 8:45

Meet & Greet

8:45 - 9:00

Introduction & Bd&e Presents...

9:00 - 9:30

Keynote: Introducing Norway’s floating cable-stayed bridge

The keynote will outline the challenges encountered and the innovations that were developed during the search for the perfect way to cross the 5km-wide Bjørnafjord. A number of crossing concepts were considered - including a floating suspension bridge and a submerged floating tunnel – but these were discarded for this location in favour of the final proposal, a floating cable-stayed bridge.


Mathias Egeland Eidem, Head of Complex Structures, Norwegian Public Roads Administration

9:30 - 9:50

AVA System for Network Rail footbridges - and beyond

Expedition Engineering

9:50 - 9:55

Bd&e Presents...

11:00 - 11.20


11:20 - 11.40

A green future for bridges (live)

In this illustrated talk Dr David Collings, Technical Director Major Bridges at ARCADIS outlines what Green Bridges are, why they are useful and why we are likely to see much more of them (in the UK alone about 30 new green bridges are being considered by ARCADIS on projects such as HS2 and Lower Thames Crossings). The talk looks at recent European and North American bridges, highlighting the benefits and some common problems (particularly for future maintenance). It looks to the next generation of green bridges and how a multi criteria matrix can be used to assess the various costs and benefits of these bridges.

David Collings, Technical Director Major Bridges, ARCADIS

11:40 - 11:45

Bd&e Presents...

Day 2 - Stream B

11:00 - 11:20

A parametric FRP footbridge for Network Rail

Miguel Escallon, Bridge Designer, Knight Architects

11:20 - 11:40

Existing Bridges and BIM – presenting the challenges

Speakers :
Vanja Samec, Independent Bridge & BIM Consultant - Austria, Chair of IABSE TG 5.6, IABSE Chang-Su Shim, Professor and Vice-Chair of IABSE TG 5.6, Chung-Ang University - Korea Eetu Partala, Technology Manager and Core Member of IABSE TG 5.6, Bridges, Sweco - Finland and IABSE

Day 2 - Workshop & Live Roundtable

9:55 - 11:00

Workshop #2: Diagnosis - a missing step in bridge care?

Bill Harvey Associates

11:45 - 12:45

Roundtable (live)

Bridge Owners Forum Grand Challenges

12:45 - 13:15

Closing Presentation

2021 Speaker's include

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