‘Forth Rail Bridge Experience’ designer appointed
Network Rail has appointed Arup to take forward the design of a visitor centre and bridge walk for one of Scotland’s most recognisable landmarks, The Forth Rail Bridge.
The six-figure contract, which will develop detailed designs for a North Queensferry based visitor centre and lift and a South Queensferry based facility for bridge walkers, will see build-ready designs delivered by the middle of next year prior to a submission being made to local authorities for planning consideration.
The project will be led by Arup’s South Queensferry office and will be supported by two local firms.
WT Architecture will provide architectural advice and local knowledge and the Paul Hogarth Company will help develop the hard and soft landscaping for both locations.
David Dickson, route managing director at Network Rail, said: “This is a significant investment in our vision for a groundbreaking new tourist attraction for Scotland. It demonstrates our commitment to further developing our visitor proposals during the Forth Bridge’s 125th anniversary year.
“The quality of submissions we received from our procurement process were of an exceptionally high standard, as you would expect with a landmark of such importance and prominence. Arup’s bid stood out for a number of reasons, not least due to the involvement of local firms which will help form a strong core for the design team.”
John Campbell, Arup’s rail business leader in Scotland, added: “Arup is delighted to be awarded this prestigious contract and look forward to collaborating with Network Rail to successfully deliver a scheme in keeping with this iconic engineering structure.”
The contract will include designs for North Queensferry where proposals envisage visitors arriving via a landscaped shore side walk to a unique visitor centre building created under the northern Fife Tower. The visitor centre will offer education and exhibition facilities alongside catering, Forth Bridge themed retail and function options. The centre will be connected by a step-free ramp to two panoramic elevators on the eastern side of the bridge. The elevators will provide access to a viewing platform located dramatically at the top of the bridge, 110m above sea level.
Design services will include safety and security features, transport solutions and pedestrian access improvements. A separate element of work is being progressed at present to develop options for traffic management for both facilities.