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Propump keeps Slough railway station’s ‘Access for All’ contract on course

At the £3.2 million redevelopment of Slough railway station, Propump Engineering’s foamed concrete proved the ideal solution to fill a platform void – overcoming restricted access issues, severe time restraints and causing minimal disruption to the thousands of passengers that use the station every day.

As part of Network Rail’s ‘Access for All’ programme, Slough station is undergoing major improvements including installation of a new footbridge and lifts to provide step-free access to all platforms. To achieve the targeted completion date of summer 2012, a fast, efficient and reliable solution was required to fill a large platform void before access works could begin.

Working with Avon Construction and main contractor Birse Rail, Propump was appointed to deliver a foamed concrete application to fill the platform void, previously used as a basement to station buildings. Propump supplied foamed concrete at a density of 1,300kgs/m³ and at a strength of 4 N/mm².

To ensure minimal disruption, the application was carried out between 1am – 4am on a Sunday morning to ensure passengers were not directly affected, and in most cases entirely unaware, of the works. Pumpable, self-compacting and able to mould itself to the shape of any void, the foamed concrete application process helped the work to be completed in a single three hour session.

Regularly used to fill underground voids, encapsulate pipes and raise floor levels, the easy application of foamed concrete is ideal for restricted access sites. With the platform surrounded by railway lines, a bridge was constructed of polystyrene blocks to allow a foamed concrete pump line to be laid over the tracks. This ensured work would be completed on time and the platform cleared before the station reopened.

Originally opened in 1840 before being rebuilt approximately 50 years later, Slough railway station is now undergoing major redevelopments to ensure access is never a problem for its passengers. Thanks to Propump and foamed concrete, the new bridge will soon be able to provide smooth, safe and reliable access for all passengers for many years to come.

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