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Street Crane Company is playing a major role supporting the Crossrail project. The company is the largest industrial crane maker in the UK and now has ten cranes deployed over three sites. The latest, a Goliath crane of 40 tonnes safe working load has been operating for just over three months and is installed just off Oxford Street. The crane will be used in the removal of thousands of tonnes of excavated material and for lowering of pre-cast concrete segments for the tunnel and Tottenham Court Road Western Ticket Hall.

For strength and rigidity the Oxford Street crane is a double girder box beam design. This has two, custom engineered, 20 tonne TVX hoists. This configuration gives maximum flexibility and safety, permitting single hoist or tandem lifting depending on the weight and bulk of the load to be moved. The crane has a maximum normal speed of 15 metres per minute and a minimum 1.5 m/m, but hoist speed can be boosted to 23 m/m for lighter loads of two tonnes or less.

The working height of lift will be 37 metres – the combined height above ground and the distance to the base of the excavation shaft. The crane driver will run operations from a high level cab on the crane bridge in order to have maximum visibility and control.

To protect the excavation shaft from vehicles and safeguard the crane should there be any minor ground movement due to excavations, large ground beams, 1.5 metres deep, have been cast 31 metres apart. The rails for the Goliath crane legs are fixed into the top of these beams. In addition to the 31 metre span between supports, a 5.1 metre cantilever will permit spoil skips to be offloaded onto awaiting trucks outside the protected excavation area. The legs of the Goliath crane have been designed to enable easy passage of skips in between.

Cranes from Street are also in use elsewhere on the Crossrail development. Six single girder overhead travelling cranes are in intensive use in the tunnel segment casting shops where thousands of tunnel segments are produced. These cranes are used for demoulding the cast segments and transportation out of the workshop. In the adjoining curing yards, where the tunnel segments must rest to gain further strength, three rail running Goliath cranes, of a fully weatherproof specification, are employed.

Crossrail Limited is the developer/client for the project and is a subsidiary of Transport for London who is a joint sponsor with the Department for Transport. The main contractor for the project, BFK, is jointly owned by civil engineering specialists BAM Nuttall, Ferrovial Agroman and Kier Construction. BFK is the contractor for the western tunnels from Royal Oak to Farringdon and the operator of the casting shops and curing yards where the cast tunnel segments are made.

The largest civil engineering project in Europe, the new Crossrail line starts at Heathrow/Maidenhead in the west and goes to Shenfield/Abbey Wood in the east. With a total length of 73 miles (118 Km) of which 13 miles (21Km) is in twin bore tunnels, this is the most challenging project undertaken in the UK since the development of High Speed One. There will be 37 stations along the line.

Street Crane Company can meet all lifting needs from 20 Kilos to 200 tonnes. A privately owned UK manufacturer, the company design and manufacture their cranes and components in the UK. As well as whole cranes, Street is a major world-wide supplier of hoists to over 60 countries. In addition to meeting the needs of construction, products are supplied into primary metal producers, stockholders, engineering companies, shipbuilding, automotive and aerospace manufacturers and diverse branches of industry.

More information

Steve Ince or Chris Lindley-Smith, Tel. +44 (0)1298 812456 Fax. +44 (0)1298 814 945
Street Crane Company, Chapel-en-le-Frith, High Peak, SK23 0PH, UK
E-Mail: admin@streetcrane.co.uk Web: www.streetcrane.co.uk

Images are on the web at www.ainsmag.co.uk/st165/5007st1a-crossrail-cranes.htm

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