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Aerospace

Manchester Airport link bridge lifted into place

A timelapse video shows the moment that a colossal 216-ton, two-storey link bridge is delicately manoeuvred into place at Manchester Airport’s Terminal Two, as work continues apace on a £1.3 billion programme to transform and modernise the terminal.

Courtesy MAG

The bridge will connect the existing terminal building to a new ‘pier’ currently under construction, which will offer extra aircraft gates, stands and seating.

More than 270 pieces of steel went into constructing the new bridge, comprised of metal decking and 150mm concrete slab flooring. The 90ft long, 33ft high bridge was pre-assembled on the airfield over the course of three months and then moved into its final place last week using a giant Shelf-Propelled Motorised Unit, a process which took eight hours.

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The Manchester Airport Transformation Programme (MAN-TP) is scheduled for completion next year, and will see Terminal Two more than double in capacity. Around three quarters of the airport’s passengers will use the new-look terminal when it is completed. Firms working on the link bridge included Mace, which is overseeing the second phase of the MAN-TP project and its supply chain partners, Martifer, Bethell, AMCO, LPL Construction Services and DGP.

Jill Fraser – MAN-TP Programme Delivery Director said: "We’re delighted to mark another major milestone in the delivery of the Transformation Programme. Installing this link bridge was a massive undertaking and it was incredible to watch such a huge piece of infrastructure carefully lifted into place, precise to the millimetre.

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“Millions of passengers will soon be using this bridge every year as they leave the new-look departure lounge and head towards their gate, ready to board their aircraft and jet off on their journeys. In designing the new Terminal Two, we have put detailed thought into each and every element of the passenger journey to ensure a smooth and enjoyable experience from start to finish, and we can’t wait to share it with our passengers next year.”

David Hanmer – Project Director, Mace said: “We have worked closely with the Manchester Airport team, design teams and contractors to ensure the move was delivered safely and to schedule. The window to move the bridge was very tight - to ensure the minimum amount of disruption to the airport and its passengers. As you would expect, it wasn’t an easy task, but everyone involved stepped up to the challenge.”

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