UtARK Railway Bridge in The Netherlands
Sarens transports massive steel sections for Amsterdam Rijnkanaal Bridge
August 2017

Sarens is pleased to be part of the Utrecht-Amsterdam-Rhine Canal (UtARK) railway bridge project. This new steel bridge over the Amsterdam Rijnkanaal will accommodate a railroad track expansion to four tracks between Utrecht Central Station and the Leidsche Rijn station. 

The BAM-HSM consortium is managing the project, and Sarens' client HSM Steel Structures is constructing and installing the new bridge as well as jacking the old bridge. The new bridge, when completed, will measure 172m long and 11m wide, with steel sections weighing a total of 3.000t.  

As part of the project, Sarens is transporting fabricated bridge parts over land and by water, bringing them from construction yard to assembly site. Sarens is also lifting parts for the complete bridge installation. 

To complete the first part of this project, Sarens performed the load out of the center piece arch from the HSM construction yard in Schiedam and the center piece deck from the Hollandia construction yard in Krimpen aan den IJsell. Sarens transported these sections along the Amsterdam-Rhine Canal, bringing them to Utrecht and then loading in both pieces. 

There were special considerations for water transport, however. First, the maximum height during water transfer was 8,8m and the bridge parts had a height of 8m. The transport barge needed to be ballasted at its maximum for transport and then de-ballasted for unloading in Utrecht. An extra bridge construction of 0,5m on the barge was necessary to get enough height for the load out. Finally, the Sarens team had to turn all bridge parts 90 degrees during load out from the barge. 

To work with a 520t load measuring 57m x 13,6m x 6,4m, Sarens used the following equipment: 

  • SPMTs
  • 2 x 700t mobile crane
  • 8 x strand jack
  • Custom-built lifting gantry 

The operation proved fascinating for onlookers, and people gathered to see the Sarens team in action. "Spectators were watching all day," says project manager Willem Ditmer.