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Building birdboxes and railways

When completed, the 60-mile Elizabeth rail line will connect Reading to Heathrow and Abbey Wood. It will call at 41 accessible stations, including 10 new stations, and serve 20 million people a year. RSK, with the developer Balfour Beatty Rail, worked on the West Outer Track Infrastructure (WOTI), which involved upgrading a 12-mile section on the Great Western main line.

RSK provided environment and consents management and was responsible for providing key deliverables, such as sustainability assessments. Our environment and consents manager provided extra resources and specialist capabilities, and was responsible for ongoing environmental commitments, including inspecting the site and producing a biodiversity offsetting report.

Following successful consultations with the local council, permission was granted to close a section of the line between Good Friday and Easter Monday. Historically, the council does not grant permission for rail closure over bank holidays; however, RSK demonstrated that best practice mitigation measures would be applied, including noise monitoring, and closing the railway for one weekend would impact residents less than the alternative options.

Additionally, RSK completed multiple ecology assessments and made suggestions for reducing waste, including recycling surplus materials and increasing on-site biodiversity by using leftover timber offcuts to make birdboxes. We also provided environmental management for the West Outer Electrification project, which ran alongside the WOTI project.

  • Location: England
  • Client: Network Rail
  • Project status: Completed
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