Civil Designer Showcase

A Mini Lifetime

Brian arrived at the doors of Ethekwini Municipality twenty-five years ago with the hope of working on some of the most extraordinary road projects in the City of Durban. Today, twenty-five years later, Brian is a well-respected and indispensable member of the City's Road Division with an undisputed history of excellence.

"We have been involved in many large-scale initiatives in the last few years. Some of these have included major arterial roads in the City of Durban, like the Umbilo Arterial, NMR Avenue, Sarnia Arterial and more recently, the North Coast Road which has since been completed at a final project cost of R150 million." Other current projects that Brian recalls, include the upgrading of the M4 freeway from Virginia Airport to the M41, and the proposed upgrading of the Stanger / Argyle / M4 Intersection.

The upgrading of the M4 freeway from Virginia Airport to the M41 was initiated by the Department of Traffic and Transportation. "We used Civil Designer extensively on this venture as it entailed the widening of a two-lane arterial to a four-lane arterial road. We were also involved in the installation of a New Jersey barrier to help minimise the existing vehicle accident rate. In addition to this, a survey was performed on the road as it stretched over a length of 4km. This information was vital and along with a quick-thinking program like Civil Designer, allowed us to complete the project in record time," explains Brian.

The Stanger / Argyle / M4 intersection was a venture of a different kind. "We were responsible for designing the horizontal and vertical alignment as well as the stormwater drainage structures. The basic design required the existing intersection to be converted into a full diamond interchange and was regarded as a typical multidisciplinary assignment. The project entailed the relocation of major services as well as the design of a bridge over the M4."

"The relocation of services include sewers, estimated at a cost of R1 million, a stormwater culvert, estimated at a cost of R4 million, electrical cables, estimated at a cost of R2 million and the relocation of a major Telkom fibre optic service estimated at a cost of R1,2 million. The R50 million project is due to commence in July 2006 once funding has been finalised," says Brian.
Stanger / Argyle / M4 intersection
Stanger/Argyle/M4 intersection | Ethekwini Municipality

A major design challenge on the project involved the design speed. "We had to ensure that the design speed conformed to the required horizontal and vertical design criteria within a restricted environment. Although the full project is only likely to start in 2006, the design for the services at the interchange is currently underway."

"The M4 was designed as a dual carriageway road. It took about two months to complete the stormwater design as well as the project's horizontal and vertical alignment. We also created a three-dimensional visual display of the bridge in Civil Designer in order to assist us with the design. Jeffares & Green Consulting Engineers were appointed to handle the bridge structure as well as the geotechnical work on the project," explains Cadle.

Brian is clearly pleased with his achievements at Ethekwini Municipality. "To some people, twenty-five years is a mini lifetime in one working career, but to me, it represents a wonderful chapter in a rewarding job. I am able to express myself in each new design and when I see the finished product there is a sense of accomplishment that is difficult to match. " Brian's enthusiasm is almost contagious and you can't help but wonder what the next few chapters will bring to this dedicated engineer.

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