Collaborative working to find the best solutions

Civil engineering involves a lot of problem solving. On Rochester Bridge, the “problems” can range from what’s the safest way to access that hard to reach area, to what’s the most environmentally-friendly way to keep the bridges clean – and all kinds of other things in between.

Anyone can sit down and make a list of options, but at the Rochester Bridge Trust we believe working collaboratively helps us to find the most innovative solutions and meet our objectives of activities being fit for purpose, low carbon and value for money.

Our preferred way of collaborating is to hold workshops with our suppliers to discuss issues, objectives, constraints, design, buildability, carbon, costs and more.

During these workshops we visit the site together because this enables us to all see first-hand what needs to be done and encourages lateral thinking for how it can be achieved. We then have round table discussions where ideas are shared, options discussed and next steps agreed.

This Bridge Engineer’s Blog is illustrated with photographs from a recent very successful workshop which saw the in-house Bridge Team meet with our term maintenance contractors, FM Conway; and consultants, Hewson, to discuss access improvements.

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