Composites Aid in Fencing and Handrail Refurbishment

Carlisle-Bridge-DetailwpCarlisle Bridge in Lancaster, United Kingdom has been in service since 1847 and currently carries the West Coast Main Line over three 120-foot spans. Within its years of service, the metal fencing and handrails have received countless refurbishments and complete overhauls which were deemed too costly and time intensive for Network Rail and its consumers.

Network Rail needed a product which was aesthetic, high strength, corrosion resistant, lightweight, and maintenance free. To ensure these benefits, Network Rail specified FRP (Fiber Reinforced Polymer) as the material has proven itself in many past civil engineering applications when corrosion issues were present. Pipex px® presented a structure with parapet fencing and handrails constructed of EXTREN® Series 525 to address the previous corrosion and aesthetic woes associated with metal fencing and handrail. The height of fencing on this project ranges from 3.5 feet to 8 feet which runs on both sides along the length of the bridge. EXTREN® I-beams, square tubes, round tubes, and flat plates were used in the pedestrian stairwells. In total, almost 1,850 linear feet of combined FRP material was fabricated offsite and then installed by Story Contracting. With over 25 years of general construction experience and 10 years of permanent way of rail-related building and civil engineering projects, the 2014 Network Rail Supplier of the Year was more than delighted with the outcome of the completed fencing and railing refurbishment project.

As it stands with its current design, the fencing and handrail at Carlisle Bridge should be able to endure more than 60 years of continuous service.

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