Sid Grover, Associate Director for environment, health and safety at environmental and engineering consultancy RSK, provides an insight into RSK’s work with the Coventry Station Refurbishment Project…
Coventry Station in the West Midlands, UK, is undergoing a major transformation to accommodate the increasing number of passengers. The redevelopment project will also improve passenger facilities at the station.
The project will mainly involve the construction of a new footbridge, station building, car parking, and a bus interchange.
The Coventry station redevelopment is being carried out by Coventry City Council in partnership with Network Rail, Virgin Trains, Transport for West Midlands, Friargate Coventry, and other stakeholders to provide a new look to the station.
Buckingham Group Contracting was awarded a £9.3 million contract for the construction of a new footbridge and canopies along with structural completion of the access tunnel under Warwick Road. RSK has been appointed by Buckingham Group Contracting Ltd. to support them on environment management plans, noise and vibration surveys, ecology surveys, lighting and dust assessments.
The aim is to enhance the social and economic markets across the already thriving Midlands region and the Tier-1 contractors regularly engage with local businesses, schools, colleges, small and medium sized enterprises, start-ups and various stakeholders to provide essential community services, while putting safety and sustainability at the forefront of every activity they undertake.
Role of the environmental consultant and engineer
International environmental and engineering consultancy RSK was commissioned to undertake the role of environmental consultant and engineer for the Coventry Station Refurbishment programme (phases 1 and 2).
The project deliverables involved the production of Section 61 Applications; noise and vibration monitoring; air quality monitoring; lighting surveys; and ecology surveys. We have shared an excellent relationship with Buckingham Group throughout the project, assisting them with fulfilling the environmental minimum requirements, design and engineering support, stakeholder engagement and liaison with Coventry City Council.
The RSK team is also fully engaged with the various local authorities and stakeholders along each route, as well as the local community, to ensure a smooth and efficient delivery throughout the project.
From RSK’s perspective, the project is being managed by Sid Grover from RSK’s environment, health and safety team.
Adding sustainability at the heart of RSK’s environmental monitoring
As part of this role, RSK is also providing noise and vibration monitoring services and construction monitoring reports for the project and has been engaging with the project construction team in the formation of site-specific mitigation and Best Practicable Means (BPM) measures. This has involved detailed barrier placement maps, night-time working stand-off allowances (from nearest residential receptor), measures of plant noise reduction and contractor toolbox talks.
The RSK team, by virtue of its extensive experience on previous projects, such as Crossrail, Midland Metro Alliance and London City Airport has established an in-house consent, risk assessment and reporting software tool which ensures efficient and high-quality delivery of the project objectives. RSK carried out extensive engagement with the construction team and local authority to agree the scope of the noise and vibration management plans, and in order to aid the successful production of this phase.
Upon submission, RSK further engaged with the local authority in the agreement of a suitable monitoring strategy throughout the life of the construction works and conducted various meetings and workshops with both stakeholders and the local communities to discuss the project from a noise and vibration perspective, as well as areas where mitigation would be in place.
Currently, RSK has developed and implemented a strategy for the continued monitoring of noise and vibration. Successful stakeholder engagement has allowed the monitoring to be conducted at close receptor locations, including residential, commercial and Grade II listed buildings. The monitoring equipment provides real-time data capture and trigger alerts, enabling the construction team to be notified of any exceedances of S61 levels or COCP criteria. The system also enables RSK to complete weekly reports from any of its UK offices through a secure web server to retrieve data.
Supporting Buckingham Group’s initiatives
In order to support the project’s initiative, as well as RSK’s own sustainability goals, RSK actively encourages employees to use public transport when practical, such as trains, buses and trams, as well as electrical cars when undertaking site visits. They are also encouraged to assess all safety, health and environmental (SHE) hazards and any other environmental concerns during their time on-site. This usually includes items such as dust, water and contamination. We are also accredited to ISO 9001, ISO 14001 and ISO 45001 standards for quality, environment and health and safety management.
All the acoustic and electronic equipment used by RSK is fully compliant with relevant British Standards, but it is also powered through sustainable means such as solar panels and Lithium-ion batteries, where possible, to minimise construction carbon on-site. None of RSK’s equipment is powered through a non-renewable resource and we are committed to implementing the project’s Sustainability Policy and assisting the project in meeting its sustainability targets.
In addition, RSK has a company-wide energy plan to ensure that all electricity procured by the company is certified ‘green’. An energy efficiency campaign is currently being conducted and key offices are being metered with smart meters, as well as a Carbon Trust audit.
An energy management system compliant with BSEN 16001 is also being implemented and we are investigating investment in a bio-diesel plant at one or more of company sites to provide fuel for machinery and vehicles.
The working relationship between Buckingham Group Contracting Ltd. and RSK is strengthening on daily basis, and we expect it to last until the overall project’s final delivery. RSK shares an excellent relationship with Buckingham Group on various infrastructure, rail and construction schemes throughout the United Kingdom.
The project is expected to have a significant number of interfaces with the likes of High Speed 2 (HS2), Commonwealth Games, and Midland Metro Alliance tram extension/refurbishment project in the West Midlands.
The ultimate objective is to build/refurbish a reputable, sustainable and outstanding train station with modern facilities in Coventry, which is looking fruitful day by day.
Sid Grover is the Associate Director in the environment, health and safety (EHS) team at environmental and engineering consultancy RSK. RSK is the UK’s leading integrated environmental, engineering and technical services business employing over 3,000 staff in offices across the UK and worldwide. In 2016, RSK was awarded the prestigious Queen’s Award for Enterprise in international trade, one of the UK’s highest accolades for business success. With a turnover of over £250 million, the company was ranked the seventh largest UK environmental consultancy by Environment Analyst in its 2018 Market Assessment Report. RSK provides independent environmental consultancy and technical services in the areas of the environment, health and safety, engineering and sustainability management to industrial, financial and public-sector clients in the UK and abroad. RSK has a diverse client base but mainly services key accounts for clients in energy, property, manufacturing, water, government and transport. The company is certified to the ISO 9001, ISO 14001 and OHSAS 18001 international standards for quality, environmental management and health and safety management.
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