Norwich rail depot redevelopment continues with new bogie drop installation

Published on: Wednesday, 9 June 2021
Last updated: Monday, 14 June 2021

The new bogie drop

A new bogie drop facility has been installed at Greater Anglia’s Crown Point rail depot to help maintain the operator’s fleet of Stadler bi-mode trains.

The work to install the £8.7M facility – which allows engineers to repair, remove and replace the underneath of train carriages, such as the wheelsets and underframe equipment – is now complete.

The work is part of Greater Anglia’s £40M redevelopment of Crown Point Depot, which began in 2018, to accommodate its fleet of new, longer trains.

Rather than lifting trains up on jacks to work underneath them, a bogie drop keeps the train carriage at track level, and instead, the bogie – the undercarriage of the train to which the wheels are attached – is lowered away.

The work to install the facility involved excavating around 960 cubic metres of soil weighing 1,440 tonnes, to create the hole for the bogie drop structure into which a Mechan lifting table was fitted before lowering in the 31-tonne bogie drop assembly.

In total, 511 cubic metres of concrete, weighing 1,226 tonnes, and 106 tonnes of reinforced steel were used in the construction.

Diesel exhaust extractor hoods have also been fitted, as well as steel work for two monorail cranes, a travelling jib crane and an engine lift crane.

Testing and commissioning of the new bogie drop facility is now underway.

Greater Anglia’s Head of Programme Safety & Assurance, Steve Clarke, said, "The successful completion of this complex project will create a step-change in the depot’s engineering capabilities."

"The depot is now ready to accommodate the new bi-mode Stadler trains and play its part in ensuring that they continue to perform well, to improve reliability and punctuality for passengers in the region."

Dean Philpott, Senior Project Manager for Taylor Woodrow, who carried out the work, said "Working in partnership with the Greater Anglia Project Delivery Team, depot staff and Stadler we have successfully brought this excellent new facility into service with no impact on operations in the live depot environment.

"Completion of the bogie drop pit on time and on budget is testament to the collaborative approach of the team."

The large scale expansion of Norwich’s Crown Point Depot creates better facilities to house and maintain the 58 new trains built by Stadler, including a new train washing facility, improved servicing equipment and the ability to store and dispense more fuel.

Special high walkways have been installed to give engineers access for maintenance and repairs - as most of the new trains’ components are on the roof – due to their lowered floors which make them more accessible to passengers.

In addition, the depot has gained upgraded toilet maintenance facilities, as all the new trains have large tanks to collect waste, rather than emptying it onto the tracks.

Stadler is responsible for maintaining Greater Anglia’s brand new regional bi-mode, Airport Express and InterCity trains at the depot, working closely with Greater Anglia to ensure that the new trains are in top condition to provide rail passengers in East Anglia with punctual and reliable services.

The new bogie drop