A lightweight movable access system, designed by GTL and installed by Aluminium Structures Ltd, has given Kier Construction a significant increase in the rate of progression the installation of new roof glazing at King’s Cross Station.
Working in conjunction with Aluminium structures, GTL were asked to design an innovative access platform that would brief eliminate the constant erection and dismantling of steel scaffolding and access towers which was having an adverse effect on the glazing work schedule.
GTL designed an access system, designed to BS 8118, BS EN1011-4:2000 and BS EN 895:1995, which is now known on site as the ‘flying carpet’ – that comprises independently movable access platforms at four different levels of the roof at King’s Cross.
All in all there are 56 bespoke work platforms positioned on four levels of both the east and west barrels. The platforms are individually shaped to the contour of the building and are repositioned using Aluminium Structures’ unique track design.
The innovative access system allows the installers of the new roof glass and photovoltaic solar power panels to operate 24 hours a day, seven days a week, twice as fast as previously, resulting in a rapid acceleration in the construction programme.
Each platform can carry a load of 1.5kN per square metre and provides a 30m-long working area at each level. Once work has been completed on a section of the roof, the work platforms can be easily moved to the next position and available for work within a matter of hours.
The access platforms also allow multiple teams to work at the same time, the workplace is more accessible and the site is tidier and safer because there is no need to store and move steel scaffolding tubes.
The glazing work is part of a major project to refurbish the roof, for which Kier Construction is the main contractor for Network Rail.
These permanent works consist of two levels of walkway on both sides of each of the station’s two 250m-long barrelled roofs – a total of around 2km of walkways – as well as 16 movable gantries that will be used for cleaning and maintenance of the finished roof.
GTL overcame difficult design challenges and delivered the project on a very tight schedule.
Gavin Rixon – Project Director
Tristan Toynbee – Structural Design Manager