Environment & Infrastructure Ireland

On track in a changed environment
Industry experts will be reviewing the latest products and legislation in the areas of civil engineering and construction at next week’s Road Expo Ireland and Civilex
isitors to Civilex and Road Expo will be able to review the l at e st c o n struction products on the market as well as attend fre e seminars, where senior professionals from the Irish civil engineering and legal sectors will be providing an update on current construction legislation and the latest engineering and surveying techniques. The event also provides professionals with an opportunity to network and discuss challenges and opportunities facing the industry. According to Mark Hudson, director of Coastway and director of the Chartered Institution of Civil Eng ine er ing Surveyors (CICES), the major challenge facing professionals and organisations in the areas of civil engineering and construction in Ireland for the foreseeable future is the ‘mass exodus’ abroad of top people and companies. ‘‘The government has to get its head out of the sand and continue to invest in infrastructure projects and to maintain the momentum that has been achieved over the past te n years,’’ Hudson s aid. ‘‘There has been a complete reversal of investment and consequently the ‘brain drain’ from Ireland is in full flow, just as happened in the last recession. ‘‘Professionals and organisations are heading to Australia and Canada, where there seems to be little evidence of a recession. Indeed, both countries continue to invest in infrastructure. Without it, countries


CICES seminar programme
The Chartered Institution of Civil Engineering Surveyors (CICES) will be hosting a halfday seminar on Wednesday, October 13. The first speaker will be James Golden, director at Quigg Golden, who is a chartered civil engineer and barrister. Golden is an expert in dispute resolution, and has seen his business grow exponentially as more construction companies and clients become embroiled in contractual disputes. ‘‘Expensive litigation is to be avoided wherever possible, and Quigg Golden will always advocate the use of alternative forms of dispute resolution before entering the high court and commercial court arenas,’’ said Hudson. At the seminar, Golden will discuss a review of the Construction Bill and adjudication as it is likely to be implemented in Ireland, covering the general scheme, timescales, enforceability and which contracts will apply. Golden will compare the bill with legislation in other jurisdictions and examine practicalities for claimants and respondents. Two of the presentations by Coastway will examine how new highways and railways can be maintained and asset manage me nt infor mation made available to both clients and consulting engineers. These techniques will enable decision-making on how best to repair sections which have

James Golden

will stagnate and cease to attract investment and opportunities, which are exactly what Ireland needs, immediately, not in five years time. ‘‘Ir ish contractors have headed for Britain, Poland,Qatar and Libya, taking their ‘best’ people with them to develop new markets. Irish professionals are often left with the stark choice of moving with their company or facing redundancy and life on the dole ^ it’s as simple as that. ‘‘The professionals and companies who remain in Ireland have to work harder and smarter to take advantage of what construction and civil engineering projects are available and indeed, maintenance of the many projects which have been completed during the Celtic tiger years, such as intercity motorways and new railways.’’

Rail infrastructure surveying by Coastway Geospatial Engineers on City West Luas line extension, Dublin deteriorated since their initial construction. ‘‘Accurate and detailed georeferenced three dimensional information is vital in achieving optimum solutions for cont i nu ou s and appropr iat e maintenance,’’ said Hudson. ‘‘The use of mobile mapping and railway infrastructure surveying with various forms of laser scanners provides the information required.’’ Enda Nolan, director of Coastway and of Coastway Geomatics UK, is a civil engineer with significant experience in large construction projects, including Canary Wharf in London. He als o worke d on t h e Docklands Light Railway project in London, the Dublin Port Tunnel, the Belfast to Bangor track upgrade, and track installation on new Luas projects in Dublin. He is currently involved with Irish Rail on numerous projects throughout Ireland. Nolan’s presentation will include a brief history of rail track installation techniques, as well as details of new techniques and technologies employed by Coastway. Nolan will also review the Amberg track trolley, its various modes of operation and accuracies achievable.This will include how entire tracks, stations, bridges and tunnels can be laser-scan surveyed in a single operation. Jeff Hott, laser scanning and survey manager of Coastway and Coastway G eomatics UK, is a geospatial engineering surveyor. His primary role within the Coastway group is the management of the survey and laser scanning teams. Some of the projects he has worked on are the N7 upgrade, the M7 / M8 new urban motorway, the Luas and Dublin Port Access Tunnel. He is currently involved in several litigation projects throughout Ireland. Hott’s presentation will outline the use of the Streetmapper mobile mapping surveying system, still a relatively new phenomenon and an advanced surveying technique. Hott will focus on the recent M7/M8 motor way proje ct at Portlaoise, where rapid real time as-built survey data was captured at 50km/hour. He will explain how the system can be used in asset management, and in provision of advanced survey data deliverables. He will also discuss how to identify the possible deformation and deterioration of road surfaces when comparing repetitive surveys over a period of time.

The NRA Design Manual for Roads and Bridges

Get on the Road to Expo
he Road Expo seminars will allow industry members to discuss major challenges with regard to road safety, highway maintenance and traffic management in Ireland. Alan O’Brien, regional director at AECOM Consulting Eng ine ers in Dublin, and chairman of the Institution of Highways & Transportation, will be presenting a seminar on traffic control techniques that can improve the operating efficiency of major roads. ‘‘T he develop me nt and maintenance of a safe and efficient road network is of critical importance to our economy,’’ said O’Brien. ‘‘Although we have had a number of years of significant investment in transport infrast r u c t u r e, t h i s h a s b e e n matched by a period of strong growth in transport demand. ‘‘As the focus on delivering value for money intensifies, we now need to consider how the life of this new road infrastruc-


Helen Hughes ture can be maximis ed through effective monitoring, management and targeted investment.’’ According to O’Brien, good domestic and international experience in the use of traffic management techniques allows network managers to influence behaviour on town and city streets to improve the reliability, safety and efficiency of road networks. ‘‘In recent years, authorities have begun to explore options

for expanding this concept of real-time network management to strategic road infrastructure, with a particular focus on those roads that carry l a rg e vol u m e s o f t ra f f i c through the fringes of urban areas,’’ he said. ‘‘While various techniques exist for achieving this, common to all is the potential for delivering improvements at relatively low cost.’’ O’Brien’s presentation will be of particular interest to authorities involved in the management and maintenance of major roads, and the organisations which support them. An NRA spokesperson said that the level of maintenance expertise, and the health and safety training on traffic management achieved over the last few years, had allowed the local authorities and private public partnership (toll road) operators to operate a high level of maintenance managem e nt. W h i l e t h e l e v e l o f funding remained a concern, he said, the actual level of future funding would be un-

known until the budgets were announced later this year. Helen Hughes, senior project manager (engineering standards) at the National Roads Authority, is responsible for road design standards and specifications. Her presentation will be of special interest to local authority engineers, consulting engineers and civil engineering contractors. ‘‘I will give an update on recent changes to the NRA design manual for roads and bridges, and to the NRA manual of contract documents for road works, more commonly referred to as the roads specification,’’ she said. ‘‘I will also ex p l a i n how to n av ig at e through the suite of documents, and outline NRA stand ards and sp e c i f i c at ions currently under development.’’ Hughes said she was looking forward to the expo as a good networking opportunity, as well as a chance to see new products and keep abreast of emerging technologies.

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