The Port of Dover has gained industry recognition after commissioning a revolutionary temporary work system for its flagship Dover Western Docks Revival (DWDR) development.
The ‘walking piling gate’, which improves the safety, environmental standards and efficiency of the construction process, has been recognized as an innovation by the Considerate Constructors Scheme (CCS), and is featured on the Scheme’s Best Practice Hub, the port announced.
The contractor, VSBW (VolkerStevin and Boskalis Westminster), has been using the custom-built equipment to install large diameter tubular piles for the Port’s new berths, pier and marina curve, and is already reporting the kit has increased the number of piles being driven daily from three to a maximum of 10.
Ron Eckersley, Community Manager for VSBW, said: “As Dover Western Docks Revival involves driving over 651 steel tubular piles as part of the marine civil engineering, the Port of Dover and VSBW decided to invest in two innovative best in class piling gates, significantly increasing the projected piling rate. This has helped us deliver the piling phase of the project in a much shorter period.”
The gates clamp onto the previously installed piles and are equipped with hydraulic roller boxes to guide the piles accurately in position. After driving a pile, the gate glides forward autonomously from the crane and hydraulically adjusts its position to prepare for the next pile.
Repositioning and leveling of the piling gate without the need of the crane significantly shortens the critical path, as it can be achieved parallel to upending and pitching of a new pile. In addition to piling in straight lines, the new piling gate can also undertake smooth, wide curves, which has proved invaluable with the Port’s marina curve design.
DWDR is the single biggest investment ever undertaken by the Port of Dover and represents the next exciting evolution of the Port, delivering long-term capacity for a key international gateway handling trade to the value of £122bn and representing up to 17% of UK trade in goods.