Ordsall Chord

  • © Paul Karalius
  • © Paul Karalius
  • © Paul Karalius
  • © Paul Karalius
  • © Nick Caville/BDP
  • © Peter jenkins/BDP
  • © Mike Riley/BDP
  • © Mike Riley/BDP
  • © Nick Caville/BDP
  • © Mike Riley/BDP
  • © Nick Caville/BDP
  • © Nick Caville/BDP
  • © Nick Caville/BDP
  • © Nick Caville/BDP
  • © Mike Riley/BDP
  • © Nick Caville/BDP
  • ©
  • ©
  • ©

Application Type

Civic Trust Awards

Level of Award

Commendation

Region

North West

Local Authority Area

Manchester

Information about this scheme

The Ordsall Chord is a new rail line connecting Manchester’s Victoria and Piccadilly Stations for the first time. The design of the structures supporting the railway and the surrounding public realm go beyond the functional brief, as a response to the special historic and townscape context of the site. The resultant holistic design brings together; the main river-spanning bridge, five smaller railway bridges,                 a footbridge, extensive heritage restoration works, viaduct arch infill buildings, widening of historic viaducts, interpretive artwork, new streets and squares. A multi-disciplinary design team was drawn together including architects, engineers, heritage consultants, landscape architects and lighting designers. This cohesive process integrated diverse disciplines to create design solutions for this unique site in the global history of the railways. The immediately adjacent Liverpool Road Station was the departure point for the world’s first passenger railway train in 1830; this significance is reflected in the 3 grade-I and 21 grade-II listed buildings and structures in the immediate vicinity of the site. They include George Stephenson’s grade-I listed Bridge, which has been restored and revealed as the centrepiece of a new public space which straddles either side of the River Irwell. This composition is completed by new structures, the arched railway bridge and a footbridge which connects Manchester and Salford. The flowing ribbon form of the dramatic new railway bridge over the river and road both complements and contrasts with the buildings and structures around. It is the first asymmetric network arch in the world, a choice of structural concept developed through collaborative working between architects and engineers. A key design driver from an architectural perspective was to achieve a cohesive visual identity for the main bridge structures which cross the River Irwell and Trinity Way. This was a significant challenge as the structural spans, context and track alignment all vary to a considerable degree.

Credits

Architect

BDP

Client

Network Rail

Structural Engineer

WSP

Sub Structure Structural Engineer

AECOM Mott MacDonald JV

Sub-Contractor

Severfield

Main Contractor

Skanska Bam JV

Conservation Architect

BB Heritage Studio

Planner

WSP

Primary Use Class

Class E1b - Bridges/Tunnels