BBR World first - 70 years ago

BBR precast segmental construction

This year marks the 70th anniversary of the first use of the precast segmental approach to construction of long bridges – and this was carried out using BBR post-tensioning technology! The La Voulte railway viaduct in southern France had been severely damaged by Allied bombing during WW2 and needed to be completely rebuilt. Thanks to the benefits of BBR PT with its cold formed button headed anchorage - and the brilliance of leading French engineer Nicolas Esquillan – the infrastructure owner SNCF (French rail operator) agreed to adopt this then innovative approach. The advantages then were buildability, speed of construction and durability – fast-forward to the present day, we can add further elements such as reduced materials consumption, and less wastage/greater quality control into the mix which promote a lower carbon approach.