Pod-Trak offers bespoke engineering solutions to clients who seek an innovative approach to the construction and maintenance of transport infrastructure…
Pod-Trak’s highly skilled teams have the knowledge to support the broad spectrum of transport networks keeping the country moving. This includes various specialist disciplines across the railway, airport, and civil engineering sectors.
The Pod-Trak story began in 2007 from humble beginnings. Fast-forward 13 years and the company now employs 300 people, has offices in London, Manchester, Bristol, and Doncaster and works throughout the UK and Ireland focusing on infrastructure projects – well established within the railway, airports and power sectors with over a decade of experience in delivering complex and specialist technical projects successfully.
Pod-Trak also has an extensive plant fleet with a full unrestricted Network Rail POS, meaning it can operate its plant on Network Rail infrastructure. Its plant fleet means that it can be more versatile, more efficient, and more cost-effective.
A key to the success is the company’s ability to build strong, long-lasting partnerships with its clients, producing an efficient, safe, and quality product throughout the project cycle. It prides itself on being different, challenging to get better solutions, and delivering right first time.
Building better railways
The Pod-Trak team are engineering specialists within the rail environment. With a strong core of multi-discipline services delivered with in-house capabilities, Pod-Trak can deliver both standalone discipline-specific and turnkey package solutions. Experienced in working on a vast range of rail infrastructure throughout the UK and Ireland including, main line, tram line and underground, Pod-Trak can assist with planning through to delivery of all projects.
When it comes to many companies reviewing performance in rail work, it can be deemed that issues can stem from where contractors are not involved at all stages of the project. The fact that it is a multi-disciplined business means that the project can be worked on by the same team – reducing the potential for inefficiencies and essentially providing a cost saving to the job.
The team has completed hundreds of projects since the formation of the company, with significant experience in civil engineering, communications, railway electrification and permanent way works.
Latest project – Barking Riverside Extension (March 2019 – May 2021)
Considered to be a very significant project in London, Pod-Trak was contracted by the Morgan Sindall VolkerFitzpatrick (MSVF) JV to complete works which would extend the London Overground to make the city more accessible for 10,800 new homes.
The Barking Riverside project is essentially building a new community near to the Thames in East London. In order for these new homes, school and healthcare facilities to function effectively, an effective transport infrastructure system is essential. Pod-Trak is delivering a multi-discipline rail systems and civil engineering scope on the project which is an extension to the London Overground and commissioned by TfL.
As part of this project, Pod-Trak are contracted to deliver:
• A 4.5-kilometre extension to Barking Riverside, from the Tilbury Loop Line between Barking and Dagenham Dock stations to Barking Riverside
• Reconfiguration of Network Rail’s Ripple Lane goods yard to allow the extension to connect to the Tilbury Loop
• Continuation of the rail system over a new 1.5-kilometre viaduct into the heart of Barking Riverside
Laying the foundations for a new future
This project involves an extensive Permanent Way scope, including:
• Creating a new up a Tilbury Loop and up & down Barking Riverside lines
• Installation of new double track spur line on the viaduct
• Installation of new ballasted track
• Transition section between ballast and slab track
• Installation of new crossovers
• Track lubrication and buffer stops
• Installation of chainage plates, gradient signs and datum plates
Electrifying the route
London Overground trains are Electric Multiple Units (EMUs), so the team is well prepared to manage the electrification project as well. The scope of the Traction /Overhead Line Equipment (OLE) works includes:
• Electrification of the Up & Down Barking Riverside Extension
• Installation of new series 2 OLE structures and catenary along with RC & EW the route
• Modifications / replacement to the existing infrastructure
• Upgrade to West Ham & Barking Feeder Stations
• New Neutral sections
• Testing and Commissioning of new Overhead Line Equipment
Civils – General/Ancillary
The benefit of working with Pod-Trak is its adaptability and versatility. The nature of the business is multi-disciplinary, so it has the ability to complete civils works as well and ensure a consistent approach to the project. The scope of the civils general/ancillary works includes:
• Breakout and excavation work
• Track formation
Recently completed project – Codsall Drainage
A section of track northwest of Codsall Station in South Staffordshire had poor drainage and unable to cope with heavy persistent rain. As a result, the commuter services to and from Wolverhampton and Birmingham were becoming unreliable.
Pod-Trak was contracted by J Murphy & Sons to construct an access road, set up the compound and complete all drainage works. Once land access was agreed with the landowner, Pod-Trak made an opening in the hedge, installed a stock fence and a temporary access road and compound using the dura-base system from Terrafirma Roadways to minimise impact and damage to the land. Site setup included all welfare and offices.
The on-track drainage consisted of 700 metres of 300mm diameter HDPE drainage pipe with 14 chambers. To support the existing flow from adjacent land two cascades were installed using the smart ditch channel lining system. A 650mm diameter drainage UTX was also installed to move from one cess to another. As a result of the drainage works 150 metres of concrete troughing had to be removed and reinstalled to protect existing cables.
The off-track drainage which was carried out during normal working hours consisted of 50 metres of 600mm diameter pipe and four precast header walls. All plant and material had to be delivered to the land locked area using rail trailers during a possession. All existing local ditches were cleared out to allow for stone pitching.
The Project required careful planning due to short midweek possessions. Difficulties encountered on site included mud, stone and clinker through the dig along with excess water which needed to be over pumped. During the UTX installation old buried rail was discovered which had to be burned out. Works were successfully delivered, and the field was handed back to the landowner in excellent condition.
The future of Pod-Trak
The pandemic has brought challenges, but Pod-Trak is thinking innovatively and adapting how it does things differently to add value. The business aims to build on the long-standing relationships it has developed over the years and work on significantly projects which make a difference to its clients and the community.
Currently, it is focusing on works for CP6 – despite any delays to work caused by lockdown. While that work comes through, it is adapting and building other work streams to maintain its market share. Opportunities are now coming through thick and fast.
Tel: 0845 450 4190
Email: [email protected]