About Us - Engineering
Our Engineering skills and interests are in civil, structural and the public realm. We are particularly interested in the impact of Engineering on our environment, and in exploring ways of improving the integration of engineering and infrastructure into the built environment.
Tea for two…or sometimes more
The relationship of architect and engineer has been compared to that of Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers: one providing the style, the other the sex.
Whichever way round this was meant, we enjoy the dance. Collaboration is crucial to us. We are team players and bring more to the design table than just engineering solutions. We tune our input to suit a client’s requirements and the skills and attributes of other team members. The joy is in creating something together that can’t be done alone.
If a picture paints a thousand words
“All artists are willing to suffer for their work. Why are so few prepared to learn to draw?”
Drawing is central to the design process for us, as it is our primary communication tool. Engineering is not just about analysis and calculation; creative engineering design is generated through drawing, from the earliest stages of a project right through to construction drawings. We invest in high quality CAD systems as well as using pencils and pens for communication of designs. Our engineers and technicians are encouraged to focus on the quality of their sketches and drawings.
Albert and the lion
A young lad once asked a sculptor how he went about carving the lions in Trafalgar Square. The sculptor explained that he started with a large enough block of stone, then cut off all the parts that did not look like a lion.
Effectiveness and economy in civil and structural design is about much more than just the least and cheapest materials to do the job. You must start by understanding the whole of what you are going to make: its form, its function, how it is expected to behave over time. If you want to make the most economical structures you have to spend the quality time at the concept stage – cutting off the non-lion bits later is the easy part.
It’s life Jim, but not as we know it
We often describe our Public Realm work as ‘Land Reclamation’ – taking back public space that is only used by vehicles and creating spaces of much greater value to us all.
The Public Realm is where we commune and we think there is more to life than functional effectiveness. Much of our public space seems to be arranged in order to minimise any chance of human interaction. Our civic work is driven from a behavioural viewpoint; how can we generate more chance interaction, spaces where anyone (not just designers) can do creative things, as well as bring some joy to the ordinary activities of everyday life?
- Building structures
- Historic buildings and structures
- Structural appraisal and repair
- Special structures
- Foundations and geotechnics
- Ground engineering and retaining structures
- Site remediation
- Canals and waterparks
- Drainage and SUDS
- Flood Risk
Transport, Movement and Highways
- Strategic transport studies
- Design for non-vehicular movement
- Transport Assessments
- Design of streets, squares and parks
- Highway engineering
- Traffic modelling