Collaboration & Teamwork
The permanent and temporary works involved in delivering Thameslink Programme were complex and highly interdependent. This was particularly true at London Bridge Station, where permanent and temporary works had to be undertaken whilst continuing to operate an intensive railway service through and around Britain’s fourth busiest station. As a result of these operational restrictions, compliance with the planned disruptive access arrangement was of critical significance.
London Bridge Area Partnership
The London Bridge Area Partnership (LBAP) was created in order to facilitate delivery of the central London or “core area” works and consists of the client (Network Rail) and three key delivery partners, Costain, Siemens Rail Automation and Balfour Beatty (Skanska were also employed to deliver works at Bermondsey).
Its scope of works included:
- Redesign and construction of London Bridge Station including new through platforms and enlarged concourse
- Re-signalling, update of traction power supply and telecoms on the remodelled track layout at London Bridge Station
- Installation of signalling and track on the new Borough Viaduct (delivered during Key Output 1)
- A new dive-under at Bermondsey to separate train services
- A Structure Strengthening Programme on the approach to London Bridge in line with the proposed track re-alignment.
Between 2012 and 2018 the LBAP delivered the major civil and rail infrastructure works included within the scope. The bulk of these works concluded in January 2018 when the fully remodelled London Bridge station re-opened.
A collaborative approach
From a contractual perspective, the objective of the Partnership was to deliver the infrastructure works in the London Bridge area by applying the partnering principles as set out in the contracts. These principles required that, once selected, each of the delivery partners work together in a spirit of collaboration, mutual trust and co-operation in order to:
- Deliver the works safely
- Use and share innovative methods to deliver the works
- Achieve effective interfacing in all areas of work and with the supply chain in order to eliminate duplication and inefficiency
- Strive constantly for continuous improvements in all areas within the Partnership
- Share and mitigate the risks and liabilities associated with the interface operations
- Introduce and apply innovative methods of delivering the London Bridge area, particularly in relation to the interface between the different teams and the sharing of resource, equipment and knowledge
- Identify and implement potential savings and benefits to the Partnership
- Acknowledging that there is a duty to alert each of the other delivery partners of any potential or actual failure to comply with the partnering principles and/or any contractual obligations
- Be known and/or acknowledged within the rail industry as an example and role model of a successful multi-party partnering arrangement.
Essentially, the delivery partners were required to be aligned in delivering the works (with a dominant focus on key factors such as quality, time, cost, and value) and in facilitating the effectiveness of the collaboration, whilst still meeting the objectives of the overall programme.
In this interview, Piotr Dudek, Construction Manager, talks about the collaboration aspect of his role and how it helped in getting the quality of the flooring right.
Collaboration & Teamwork Case Studies
How focusing on the delivery of benefits, rather than outputs, created a working culture and the processes that were key to the success of the London Bridge station redevelopment project.
This case study considers procurement and commercial strategy as part of collaborative planning, management and delivery of the Thameslink London Bridge Area Partnership works.
This case study considers the importance of early contractor involvement as part of collaborative planning, management and delivery of the Thameslink London Bridge Area Partnership works.
A three-stage process to ensure physical interfaces were allocated, coordinated and completed correctly first time on site by subcontractors during the London Bridge Station Redevelopment project.
Key lessons from what went well on the project including: integrated planning and relationship management, management of third party relationships, integrated working, change management, Value Engineering and scheme handback and close-out. The case study also looks at what could have been improved, including contract content, contract administration and rework/redesign costs, and proposes recommendations for future schemes.
The High Capacity Improvement project has provided the European Train Control System and enhanced signalling control systems needed to support automatic train operation and timetable management. These systems are crucial to the programme being able to reliably increase train frequency from 16 to 24 tph in each direction through the core Thameslink area from Blackfriars to St Pancras.
The introduction of a whole new train fleet delivered huge benefits to passengers while demonstrating that working flexibly and collaboratively led to impressive speed improvements in the commissioning of rolling stock.
How collaboration and incentivisation were crucial to successful delivery of Key Output 2, including the re-signalling, track remodelling and construction of London Bridge station, construction of the Bermondsey Dive Under to the east and Borough Viaduct to the west.
In December 2017 Jacobs were commissioned to undertake a review of the collaborative aspects of the planning, management and delivery of the Thameslink London Bridge Area Partnership works in Key Output 2 in order to produce a legacy document that will inform and inspire subsequent programmes of work.
To gather the required information, a series of seven workshops were held during January 2018 with a cross-section of key staff, both past and present, from all partner organisations. Workshop discussions were captured and reviewed and a number of recurring themes identified.
This report considers each of those themes in turn, identifying where the collaborative approach taken had a positive effect as well as areas where further improvement or learning may be possible.