Middleton Locomotive Wash Facility2018-09-12T23:22:45+12:00
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Middleton Locomotive Wash Facility

Sector: Rail


Client: KiwiRail


Date: 2017


Project Location: Middleton, Christchurch


Frequency Role: Design Manager, Project Manager & Contract Manager


KiwiRail needed to significantly upgrade their locomotive wash facility after is was damaged during the 2011 earthquakes. Frequency were engaged as Project Manager, Design Manager and Contract Manager to oversee the construction in a live operating rail yard.

The new drive-through design of the building integrates all locomotive and bogie wash activities into a single building with a dedicated bio-clean wash-pit for cleaning under locomotives.

Safety features include mechanical ventilation, boom-gates, a high-pressure reticulated hot water system and self-closing swing gates on the elevated work platforms.

Key Challenges:

  • Selecting a site that would not constrain the future development of the rail yard.
  • Managing the safety risks associated with construction taking place within the operational rail yard.
  • Ensuring the various building elements were designed to withstand the harsh wet operating environment inside the enclosed facilities.
    For example, an innovative concrete design was developed incorporating fiber reinforcing to enhance the serviceability and durability performance of the main slab.
  • Safety in design considerations ensured that potential hazards such as working at heights, were effectively controlled.
    For example, self-closing swing gates were incorporated along the elevated work platform to cater for situations when no locomotives are alongside the platform.
  • During the design phase consideration was given to the varying width and heights of different fleet models that might use the facilities.