The RailStaff Awards 2023

Wanda Simpson

Said the following about TRU - LINESIDE CIVIL DESIGN TEAM (DERBY):

“The TRU Amey Consulting Lineside Civil (LSC) Team is a small design team of eight members in Derby led by Wanda Simpson. In 2021 the team delivered 67 submissions (more than one a week). Most of those submissions being in the first nine month of the year while the office was closed during lockdown. The team is part of the Trans-Pennine Route Upgrade (TRU) Alliance which comprises of Network Rail, Amey Rail, BamNutall, Amey Consulting, Arup, Siemens and many more sub-consultants and sub-contractors.

The teams continued effort in 2022 has been at the forefront of the alliances on both East & West of Leeds on the quality of work produced under a time critical programme; Network Rail asset managers and Project Engineers (PE) have continued to use the team’s designs as the gold standard for excellence, and sharing their lesson learnt with other design teams to promote integrated constructable designs and effective assurance process.

One such innovative value engineering implementations of note was to replace the traditional concrete raft foundation for Track Section Cabinet (TSC) with a ‘Ring Beam’ foundation design. This allowed the new type of TSC to be supported using a reinforced concrete trench foundation founded forming a perimeter ring around the edge of the cabinet. This design reduced the use of wet concrete by half and saved in construction time and cost by 50%.

The above out of box solutions have helped TRU to significantly reduce its carbon footprint along the route and allowed for quicker installation on site which has been praised by the construction team BAMNutall.

The team’s ability to work collaboratively within the TRU Alliance and with the Construction Team has shown that they could provide pragmatic design solutions and incorporate changes on site. One such example was when a proposed Under Track Crossing (UTX) location had to be relocated six weeks prior to the track possession for construction; the team was able to update the original approved detailed design within the time frame including integration with associated design disciplines. The design received a CAT 1 from the clients Project Engineer (PE) check review - which means no comments or revisions required, a rare achievement on a Civil Engineering submission. This was made possible due to the Design Team’s experience and expertise in UTX designs and a great working relationship with both the construction team and the Network Rail PE.

The team’s experience working with a Common Data Environment (CDE) meant that they could integrate and review LSC’s proposals with other discipline’s designs within the federated model space. Using this approach, they promoted ‘Safe by Design’ by assuring that construction phasing could be carried out and allowed the Construction Team to appreciate and manage risks as part of the CDM Risk Review. Through integrated design meetings, the team has demonstrated that they are able to reduce the design and the construction programmes significantly through value engineering and early contractor engagement. Using the CDE as an assurance tool also allowed standard designs to be delivered in the same manner as a significant reduction in construction drawings could be achieved. This was very much welcomed by the construction team as it also minimised drawing confusion on site.

The Team has also been involved in multiple technical workshops and has been asked to support other design teams by seconding its members to other Section of TRU to share their knowledge and since their success last year, they continue to produce solutions to meet challenging construction commencement dates.

The success of the Derby LSC Team has been summarised by one of the TRU Contractor Engineer Managers as ‘…the ability to accommodate emerging requirements whilst demonstrating ongoing commercial and programme control is ‘best in class’ – I wish other “design teams” were as thorough.’

Or from the TRU Package Manager, ‘Wanda Simpson (Derby LSC Design Team Leader) always approaches challenges with a positive mind-set and with great attitude which ripples through every member of the team and the project to strive to achieve challenging deadlines.’“

Dave Speakman

Said the following about TRU - LINESIDE CIVIL DESIGN TEAM (DERBY):

“The 'go to team' for Lineside Civils solutions on TRU Project W1.

Wanda has grown a fantastic team with a very diverse portfolio of lineside civils deliverables including containment, walkways. SPTs, Signal bases, junction lighting towers, DNO solutions, location cabinets, access points, lineside fencing and electrical sub-station compounds - all of these elements delivered in a professional manner within a very challenging/ emerging programme environment.

Congratulations and well done!“

Asher Thomas

Said the following about TRU - LINESIDE CIVIL DESIGN TEAM (DERBY):

“The Lineside Civils team on Project W1 of the Trans Pennine Route Upgrade has been used as evidence of best practise & gold standard design deliverables at Network Rail. Other projects are now being asked to replicate the principles of design development and delivery that the LSC team of W1 undertake.

The quality of deliverables and the excellent use of progressive assurance has allowed a smooth design development and implementation. This has allowed for delegated assurance, a relatively new efficiency to be used as the team has developed a high level of trust with Network Rail assurance.

The team go above and beyond to support both fellow design teams and the needs of Network Rail staff. I can see them as an excellent candidate for this award.“

Alexander McKie

Said the following about TRU - LINESIDE CIVIL DESIGN TEAM (DERBY):

“I am proud of the Amey Consulting Derby Civils team. The team has worked relentlessly to ensure not only that the huge task of TransPennine Route Upgrade (TRU) W1 Lineside packages were delivered while meeting an exceptionally challenging programme, but all to the highest quality and standard, they are now considered as the golden standard for the remainder of the project to aspire too. The team are constantly available to support the client and construction teams as well as challenging and delivering innovative solutions. Driving at the forefront of BIM (Building Information Modelling) processes and adoption of managing designs for TRU W1 Common Data Environment (CDE). Driving efficiency and collaborative multi discipline design approach from end to end. Their pragmatic, collaborative approach and work ethic has excelled them to be the Lineside design team of choice to go to.

Well done team!“

Timothy Evans

Said the following about TRU - LINESIDE CIVIL DESIGN TEAM (DERBY):

“I have had the pleasure of reviewing from a technical perspective and auditing the line Side civils designs undertaken done by the Derby team.

The work is always completed to a high technical standard and in a timely manner and for the audits I was struggling to find any items that were at fault. When I suggested opportunities to improve the method of working these were always investigated by the team and if worthwhile instigated as soon as possible.

The working relationships within the team are excellent and it is wonderful to see the team working together and developing in terms of workload undertaken and size as the project progresses. As others have said this is the team to go to if you have questions about this type of work

They also have a very rigorous approach to ensuring their designs can be built and done so in a safe manner something I have commended them on.“