Fellside Part I
s.a.j Transport Consultants
6th July 2015
A key issue for central government is the shortage in suitable housing stock. Between 2015-2020 it is estimated that approximately 250,000 – 300,000 new houses will be required each year to meet demand. UK housing developers are therefore facing ever greater challenges to secure and develop viable sites for sustainable and affordable housing. Consequently, housing developers are now looking in more detail at brown field sites and those with difficult terrains.
Fellside, Hexham is a prime example of a plot of land which is ideal for housing development but which presents challenges to access the site using standard highway construction. It is at times like this where specialist Consultancies such as GPS are required to apply their skills to design problems in order to test and evaluate all possible solutions to ensure the site is viable for development.
SAJ Transport Consultants commissioned GPS to assist them in a feasibility study to provide a potential housing development with an access road.
During SAJ’s initial investigations it soon become apparent that accessing a potential development would prove difficult with a new road to adoptable standards.
Their proposal outlined an access route which would cut through a suitable gap between two existing properties and then proceeded to adopt a route which required a steep hill climb in order to reach the site.
SAJ requested a quick turnaround on this project to take our drawings to a technical meeting with Northumbria County Council.
GPS Engineers used Lidar data to create a 3D ground model of the existing area. The brief was to model a new highway layout to show the vertical alignment and associated earthworks.
GPS produced two main design options in order to demonstrate the site constraints, highway layouts, proposed gradients etc. Our solutions were as follows:
Layout as per clients brief, showing a road separating into two access roads to serve the site from two areas. Vertical alignments were demonstrated to be very steep.
An alternative layout taking a windy path along the natural contours of the slope to achieve a 1 in12 gradient.
GPS managed to successfully deliver the designs within the tight timescales specified by the client. Both layouts included volume calculations and visibility analysis.