Design & installation of new girders at Cardiff station

Design & installation of new girders at Cardiff station


This was a very prestigious job needed for Colas which involved many different areas of expertise for our Orion team. We had concurrent jobs running at the same location which involved heavy planning and pin point accuracy on execution to make sure the strict times frames were adhered to.

  • Location: Cardiff, Wales
  • Client: Colas
  • Date: April 2020
  • Type: Civil and Construction and Labour Supply

We worked closely with Colas and Aecom on the design and installation of the girders completing the job within the time frame and budget agreed.

In total we had 40M of coper adjustments to complete along with 60M of GRP girder installation which was split into 4 x 15M sections.

All the copers in our adjusted section had to be replaced which resulted in them having to be manufactured to existing dimensions as they were custom sizes. Once Orion had the copers manufactured, they were all replaced then adjusted to extreme accuracy of the Colas design along with ancillary works taking place such as tactile adjustment and removing the platform slabs, adjusting them and relaying them to make sure the platform crossfall was complaint to NR specifications. With a tight working area and heavy

The Girder design was provided to us via Aecom which we then manufactured. There were 4 x girder installs to manage all taking place simultaneously with a design of both GRP and steel with fixings to secure. Each girder install was different in their installation due to a number of reason including track levels. Many times throughout the project Orion workers had to think on their feet and solve on the job obstacles which they did swiftly and efficiently.

One example was upon excavation of the existing ballast, which was need to remove the existing girder, it was found that the ground level was higher than expected which resulted us fabricating the steel and GRP retention wall on site. Even with this delay to our programme, through the quick and positive thinking and craftsmanship of our workers, we managed to fulfil and deliver the project on time.

Another obstacle we faced was that when installing a certain section of the girder, the design didn’t allow for a return section of the girder which left an opening for ballast to penetrate which was not acceptable. Whilst on site, we interacted with our client and with their permission, we managed to fabricate the additional steel and have this transported from London to Cardiff the same day! Considering this was also a Sunday this was a marvellous effort by all of our team!

Orion’s attitude and commitment on this project solidified our already fantastic relationship with our client and proved once again why we are their preferred supplier on all civils work.


To find out more, please contact us.