New ground run enclosure civil engineering design for Cambridge Airport

New ground run enclosure civil engineering design for Cambridge Airport

In 2017, Marshalls Aerospace commissioned Volker Fitzpatrick and Fjori to design and construct the new GRE at Cambridge Airport. The 20m high superstructure, designed by US company BDI, will be the largest GRE with doors in the World. It will be large enough to accommodate either a Boeing 747 or 777. In order to assist the design development, the Fjori team attended a similar but smaller BDI facility at Hamburg Airport, at which the design team was able to discuss issues with the operational team in order to design out risks and technical problems. Fjori designed all the aircraft and roadway pavements, as well as the foundations to the superstructure. One of the most complex design elements of the project has been the prediction of heave and its effects on the pavement levels. This has required detailed 3-dimensional ground modelling in both an initial construction status and also in a post-heave status. The construction of the GRE required the redistribution of a large amount of surplus fill. This redistribution occurred within the airfield boundary, and Fjori provided detailed 3-D models to show how the large volumes of earth could be kept on site without compromising the obstacle limitation surfaces.

Reference available on request

Key Project Details

• The project required the removal of a large mound of earth which required a detailed analysis of heave and the need to design all elements to accommodate up to 35mm of movement 

• Detailed heave monitoring required to enable construction programme and sequencing to be confirmed 

• Flood risk assessment

• Layout of features within the pavements critical to performance of the engine run during operations 

• New concrete taxiway provided to access the GRE 

• Levels of GRE designed to avoid conflict with ILS critical zones 

• High level of design coordination with GRE superstructure supplier/installer (BDI)

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