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Technical paper: Geotechnical aspects of constructing the new Bullring, Birmingham

K Ward, R Monteith and T Palmer, Sir Robert McAlpine. This paper was first published in GE’s August 2002 edition.


This paper presents a review of the geotechnical issues involved in the redevelopment of the famous 1960s shopping centre site in Birmingham.

The objective throughout the project was to optimise foundation construction and temporary works. The following aspects of the work are discussed: pad foundation construction; temporary works for the contiguous bored pile wall alongside brick railway tunnels; installation of rock nails to secure a basement slab against uplift; and the dewatering arrangements for the low level excavation. Design and build contractor for the scheme was Sir Robert McAlpine and the structural engineer was the Waterman Partnership. 

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