Bridge Embankment

LECA® LWA was specified for the new Princes Quay Footbridge in Hull. This 60 metre structure weighs 150t and was fabricated by SH Structures from the design concept by Matter Architecture, McDowell Benedetti and Arup. 

This was designed to be a safe pedestrian crossing but also thanks to its phenomenal design, also acts as a great landmark in the city of Hull. LECA® LWA was specified specifically for the embankment build development to support footbridge access paths. 

Princes Quay Footbridge features a curved canopy that will provide shelter for users. SH Structures carried out the fabrication at its facility in Sherburn-in-Elmet and then assembled the bridge close to the site. It was then transported by self-propelled mobile trailer units to’ its final location across the A63.

In this embankment, Leca® LWA was specified as a fill material which filled a space which was 6 m in height and was covered with a concrete pavement, furthermore, a high strength polyester geotextile was used as reinforcement combined with a wrap-around solution for added stability. 

The project’s sub agent Interserve Construction Limited representative who worked closely on the development of this geotechnical structure, Adam Land, Sub Agent from Interserve Construction Limited, commented that “LECA® LWA was specified due to its lightweight properties. Underneath our site are foundations to a demolished warehouse which is sat on timber raft foundation / piles. The lightweight structures above were designed to avoid overloading the below foundations." The selection of LECA® LWA was also confirmed through “its lightweight properties against traditional earthworks materials or fill.”


Amount of material: 600m3 of LECA LWA(10-20mm)

Interesting Fact:  Leca® LWA was specified as a fill material which filled a space which was 6 m in height and was covered with a concrete pavement,

Delivery Method: 2.5m3 Bulk Bags

Main Contractor:  Interserve Construction Limited

Overview of Project

The use of LECA® LWA was nothing new for the team, however the use of the material in a project like the Princess Quay Footbridge was new, “A couple of other members of the team had used it before, but only in more basic applications such as backfill at bridges etc. We used LECA® LWA filled bulk bags to form our terracing shape and secure the material.”

Bridge Embankment
Bridge Embankment
Bridge Embankment
Bridge Embankment

The team went onto explain that LECA® LWA actually replaced alternative solutions, “The original design was polystyrene and Balfour Beatty were involved with Arup and HE as ECI on this project. They changed to Leca in discussions with the designer.”

"The project was completed successful and within the timeframes planned, “We were pleased with the ease and speed of installation and furthermore, we have been happy with the service and advice provided by Leca from order stage through to construction and delivery.”


Princess Quay Footbridge Timelapse


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