Engineering Design Consultants

Junction Lock Swing Bridge

Junction Lock Swing Bridge is a highway bridge with two carriageways, each with a pedestrian walkway. It is a riveted construction, weighing 650 tonnes dating from 1925. As part of the Bristol City Docks Operating Infrastructure Project, the operating mechanism for Junction Lock Swing Bridge is being upgraded. The existing system, which uses water hydraulics, will be replaced by a modern oil hydraulic system.

The current operating mechanism dates back to when the bridge was installed and requires frequent costly maintenance. The new system will be more robust and will mean that the operating mechanism requires less maintenance, and will therefore be more cost effective.

A key challenge in this project was dealing with the massive horizontal forces that were being applied to the central pintle support due to thermal movements. These forces were causing severe damage to the bridge foundations. The new system restrains the bridge near the pintle to minimise thermal movement and provides a novel pintle design. This is less sensitive to misalignment and the large forces which result. The unique design of the pintle combines the features of a spherical bearing with those of a pot bearing, whilst also acting as the main lift cylinder for the bridge.

Involvement in the project included detailed design of all mechanical equipment and bridge bearings.

For more information regarding our moving bridge design services or to discuss your swing bridge requirements, please telephone 0114 399 0400 or email us.

Key Facts
  • Location:
    Cumberland Basin, Bristol
  • Client:
    Sub-consultant to Atkins Bennett Ltd