WYG wins innovation award for Ropewalk Development


White Young Green (Ireland), consultant to the built, natural and social environment, has won the Association of Consulting Engineers of Ireland (ACEI) 2008 Award for Innovation for the Ropewalk Development at Sir John Rogerson's Quay in Dublin.

The prestigious award is presented on a bi-annual basis for projects completed in the preceding 3 years that show innovative and original engineering techniques and solutions.

WYG was commissioned by Haytonvale Ltd. to provide a cost-effective solution for the heavily contaminated 2.75-acre site at Sir John Rogerson's Quay. Following detailed cost analysis, an in-situ treatment was decided upon and a soil mixing technique was chosen as the appropriate method. Prior to this, soil mixing was used as an engineering solution in Ireland - but had limited use as an environmental solution. This was the first project in Ireland to use this combined solution on such a scale.

The project involved detailed quantitative risk assessment, Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) licence application and surrender, over 5,000 soil mix columns, a groundwater cut-off wall, a groundwater treatment plant, bulk soil excavation, environmental monitoring, finite element analysis and non-standard punching shear designs.

The combination of innovative environmental and engineering solutions contributed to the unique nature of the project - bridging the disciplines and providing a certified conclusion. The Ropewalk Development is one of the largest soil mixing projects carried out in Ireland for a private commercial development.

WYG also utilised some American structural codes to design cruciform steel sections to resist punching shear under heavily loaded columns. This value engineered solution reduced the excavation volumes in the contaminated ground - introducing significant cost savings for the project. Another key feature of the development was the steel cable trusses to support the Atrium glazing in the O2 office building at the site.

The final structure on the site includes a 200-bedroom hotel, headquarter offices for O2 and ESRI and an apartment block.

Commenting on the award, Ray Moore, Group Managing Director White Young Green Ireland, said - "We are delighted to be recipients of this ACEI award, which recognises the unique and innovative approach WYG took to the Ropewalk Development Project. The WYG Team - led by Denis Blake and Kevin Cleary - successfully rose to the challenge presented to them, combining engineering and environmental solutions in a cost effective manner."