Daventry people invited to have say on design of HS2's new Oxford Canal viaduct

Artist's impression of the Oxford Canal Viaduct by Moxon Architects © HS2 LtdArtist's impression of the Oxford Canal Viaduct by Moxon Architects © HS2 Ltd
Artist's impression of the Oxford Canal Viaduct by Moxon Architects © HS2 Ltd
People are invited to have their say about the design and structure of the new HS2 viaduct, which will go between Banbury and Daventry.

Campaigners continue to protest against the high speed rail project, claiming it is unnecessary, costly and environmentally damaging.

HS2 said it is trying to work with the community to replace trees and woodland lost to the project - and it has now launched an online design event to gather feedback from the community on the viaduct.

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The Oxford Canal Viaduct will take the high speed railway 62.5m across the canal, towpath and a country lane near the village of Wormleighton.

It is one of 15 viaducts and bridges across the central section of the HS2 route which is being designed by HS2’s main works contractor EKFB - a team made up of Eiffage, Kier, Ferrovial and Bam Nuttall - working with architects Moxon and design partners ASC – a team made up of Arcadis, Setec and Cowi.

One of the key questions is whether the masonry finish used on the wall in front of the abutment should also be extended to the two sets of piers that support the structure.

HS2 project client director, Ambrose McGuire said: “The Oxford Canal Viaduct is one of eight key design elements on the central section of the HS2 route and I’m pleased to see the amount of thought that’s been put into the design.

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"The building of the canals revolutionised transportation and helped to build modern Britain so it’s great to see how our contemporary design includes a nod back to those eighteenth-century pioneers.

“We’re keen to hear what the community has to say and I would encourage anyone with an interest in the bridge to have a look at the designs and let us know their views.”

EKFB technical director, Janice McKenna said: “We were given the challenge of designing a structure that would sit as lightly as possible above the canal, while being low enough to protect views across the countryside.

“That’s why we came up with the idea of lengthening the span over the canal to bring in light, while keeping the continuity of the towpath and using the same kind of rough-cut masonry that is such a feature of the existing canal bridges.

"I hope the community like the designs and look forward to hearing their views.”

Visit https://www.hs2.org.uk/explore/hs2-design-engagement-oxford-canal-viaduct-spring-2021/

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