Multidisciplinary Engineering Consultants

Planning granted for £30m expansion of Britvic soft drinks facility

Britvic Soft Drinks has been granted planning permission to build a new distribution warehouse alongside their existing bottling and distribution plant in Rugby.  Clarkebond is providing civil, structural and ground engineering services and transport planning on the scheme.

The warehouse will comprise a fully automated high bay storage unit extending to 35m in height (14 tiers of racking), over an area of 134m x 52m connecting to a 2-storey low bay loading and office unit. The facility will provide storage for 33,000 pallets feeding to 10 loading bays.  Clarkebond was appointed as designers for all civil engineering works up to and including the structural slabs ready for the high-bay supplier to build the warehouse under a separate contract.

Clarkebond was also appointed to carry out a transport assessment in support of the planning application which confirmed that the existing road network was adequate for any additional vehicular movement incurred by the development. Clarkebond also designed a new road access to the extended facility.

The warehouse is to be constructed within the existing site area, with development platform cut into a steep bank with up to 10m level difference between the proposed floor level and perimeter ground level. This requires significant retaining structures along two sides of the warehouse designed with cognizance of adjacent industrial developments that lie within 5m from the wall. Detailed ground displacement modelling has been undertaken in the design of the walls, which will include 1200mm diameter contiguous piles. The wall is to be stiffened by extending the high bay slab to connect with the wall toe coupled with a further reinforced concrete toe buttress to limit deflections in the highest portions.

Further displacement modelling has also been undertaken to confirm ground movements under the variable loading both during construction and the operational life of the structure will be within the tight tolerance of 1:1500 differential and +/- 15mm total level difference. The analysis has confirmed the ground conditions to be sufficiently favourable to facilitate a ground bearing slab.

Clarkebond engineers are also designing an above ground conveyor tunnel that will connect the production and storage units, with the roof providing a road way for distribution traffic exiting the site. The tunnel will be constructed from pre-cast concrete units and also form a retaining structure to the adjacent loading and service yard that lie at 4.5m above the floor level of the production facility. 

The civil engineering construction works started in April and will be completed in December 2017, with superstructure construction in 2018.

Client: Britvic Soft Drinks Ltd
Engineers: Clarkebond
Contractor: Buckingham Group
Architect: Stephen George & Partners