Engineering design of the platform edge screens for the Elizabeth line’s tunnel stations

Document type: Journal Publication
Author: Julian Birbeck CEng MIStructE, Rosemary Smiley MEng, George Stowell BA(Hons) Dipl Arch MA(Dist) MRIAI RIBA, Ed Newman-Sanders CEng MICE, The Structural Engineer
Publication Date: 02/07/2018

  • Abstract

    This paper covers the engineering design of the platform edge screens for five Elizabeth line tunnel stations in central London. Full-height platform edge screens are a signature feature of the Elizabeth line’s station platforms, and their design presented many challenges. To gain maximum uniformity, the edge screens were developed as a common reference design, which was then issued to each of the station contractors.

    The paper describes the technical challenges from the point of view of a structural engineer, but in doing so, it draws in interfaces with disciplines as diverse as tunnel ventilation, electrical engineering, and rolling stock procurement. The reference design approach allowed unique features of the platform edge screens to be prototyped and tested before construction.

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  • Authors

    Julian Birbeck CEng MIStructE - Atkins

    Julian joined the Crossrail project in 2013 as structural engineer for design, client advice and technical support services to Crossrail’s Chief Engineer’s Group (CEG) on the linewide design programme. The role involved engineering design, review and specification of station architectural components included tunnel cladding, passenger way-finding and trackside signage.

    He worked as lead structural engineer for the Platform Edge Screen, including design, offsite testing and technical support to CEG in their acceptance of contractor designs, procured, developed and delivered at five stations in central London.

    Julian is a chartered structural engineer with over 23 years’ experience on a broad range of landmark architectural and infrastructure projects.

    Photo of Rosemary Smiley

    Rosemary Smiley MEng - Atkins

    Between 2014 and 2018, Rosemary was a structural engineer for the Crossrail route-wide common components package, C100, involved in the design, material testing, and construction support for the Platform Edge Screens for the five central mined stations. Rosemary is an engineer at Atkins, a member of the SNC-Lavalin group.

    Photo of George Stowell

    George Stowell BA(Hons) Dipl Arch MA(Dist) MRIAI RIBA - Atkins

    For the Crossrail project, George was technical lead for the Canary Wharf Crossrail station over site development during 2012. Between 2013 and 2018, he was contract manager and client adviser for the line wide design team, comprising Atkins, Grimshaw, Maynard and GIA Equation.  In the latter role for Crossrail Chief Engineer’s Group (CEG), Head of Architecture, the team undertook the following:

    • Developed user and maintainer performance requirements through prototyping and testing.
    • Assured the central London sub-surface station designs and line wide architectural components.
    • Used assurance evidence to advise CEG on acceptance of designs provided by their station contractors.

    George is an award winning Chartered Architect and RIBA accredited Client Adviser with over 26 years professional experience on the planning, design and delivery of high quality major public projects.

    Photo of Ed Newman-Sanders

    Ed Newman-Sanders CEng MICE - Atkins

    Ed Newman-Sanders has twenty-five years of experience in structural building and bridge engineering design and construction. Ed was the lead structural engineer for the Crossrail route-wide common components package, C100. His work predominantly comprised the structural design and material testing for the Platform Edge screens for the five central stations. Ed was also the lead structural engineer for Crossrail’s only above-ground station in the central section, Custom House.

    Ed is a Technical Director at Atkins, a member of the SNC-Lavalin group.