New pedestrian rails for Brayford Wharf

By Clark Williamson, contracts director, ECS Engineering Services Ltd

BRAYFORD Waterfront offers a scenic social space for Lincoln’s inhabitants, with restaurants, entertainments and events bringing cheer to England’s oldest inland harbour.

ECS Engineering Services has recently replaced nearly 100m of galvanised hand railings for the convenience of pedestrians along Brayford Wharf with a 1150mm high, galvanised, polyester powder-coated, decorative hand rail in jet black. PHOTOS: ECS

ECS Engineering Services has recently enhanced the safety credentials of the area with the replacement of nearly 100m of galvanised hand railings for the convenience of pedestrians along Brayford Wharf.

Handrails are of great importance for walkways and pedestrianised areas, especially when they happen to be near large areas of open water. After years of service, the existing hand rail on the wharf was beginning to show signs of wear and tear, with several fixings to the concrete copings at risk of failure and needing an urgent repair to maintain safety. To renovate the railings in the area, ECS Engineering Services was contacted thanks to a strong track record in fabrications and carrying out civil works in a variety of different sectors.

To source appropriate railings, ECS Engineering Services took advantage of the expertise of Alpha Rail, a market leader in the manufacture of guard rails and custom metalwork. Together, ECS and Alpha Rail selected a 1150 mm high, galvanised, polyester powder-coated, decorative hand rail in jet black to cover the distance. To further improve aesthetics, finials were specified at the top of each supporting post, ensuring that function was matched by form, a key concern in a popular area of the city.

With the guard rails selected, the challenges of the site itself were brought into sharp focus. The hand rails extend along roads, wharfs, bridges and a section of railway – which presented the ECS team with multiple safety risks. The team also had to take into account changes in elevation and returns along the span of the walkway, which further complicated installation. However, ECS has built a reputation working in demanding environments in the civil and water sectors, which stood the team in good stead when it came to this project. In the event, the rails were installed smoothly and without delay, while preserving the public access to the adjacent footpaths.

ECS was able to provide a turnkey service to further enhance the project timeline. Epoxy repair mortar was utilised to enhance the connection between rail and concrete, as the previous rails had begun to lose rigidity as the mortar deteriorated custom designed base plates for some of the guardrails were included to further improve rigidity were added to further improve rigidity as well. To complete the projects delivery, ECS managed the hire and deployment of safety signage and temporary barriers.

Managing the project from initial drawings to final installation delivers time saving and value advantages to the end customer. With a full host of electro-mechanical services offered under one roof, ECS enables its customers to benefit from a blend of convenience and expertise, helping to deliver the efficiency that engineering projects demand. In this case, it was vital to minimise disturbance to traffic and locals who use the waterfront regularly.

Clark Williamson, contracts director at ECS, said: “This project shows that we are capable of delivering civil works in challenging application areas with minimal disturbance. Working closely with Alpha Rail, we were able to specify a solution quickly, while carrying out installation with the efficiency needed in a built-up and populated area. Now locals and visitors to Lincoln can benefit from the increased safety these new rails provide.

As the appointed framework contractor to a number of local authorities and government institutions, we offer expertise in design, fabrication, installation, management and safety for every project.”

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