• Grontmij

    A6 to Manchester Relief Road

    Manchester, England, United Kingdom

Project Summary


Grontmij was retained to deliver the detailed design, construction, and defects liability maintenance of 10 kilometers of a dual carriageway in Manchester, England. The GBP 100 million project included the geometric layout and signal controls on the A6 junction, four railway structures requiring a major interface with Network Rail, bridgework, utility diversions, and flight path constraints of the Manchester Airport. Working across six offices, with over 200 staff supporting 15 disciplines, Grontmij needed a collaborative, integrated modeling environment to accommodate three different municipal clients.


Using Bentley technology, Grontmij implemented a federated BIM process enabling all stakeholders to work in a reliable collaborative manner for effective decision making throughout the project. Grontmij created and provided early contractor access to over 160 models, allowing the contractors to develop a virtual construction sequence. A point cloud survey of the overhead lines for the railway structures was commissioned to virtually analyze 3D models against critical headroom constraints, and was then made available to the widely dispersed delivery teams via ProjectWise. The information mobility and integrated modeling capabilities of Bentley applications were critical to the success of this project.


The use of a virtual federated model helped break down barriers between disciplines and enhanced the review process through graphic illustration, facilitating quick and effective decisions. Working in an integrated modeling environment via Bentley Navigator, Bentley MXROAD, i-model Composition Server (formerly i-model Composer), OpenRoads, and ProjectWise, Grontmij produced more accurate, safe, efficient, and cost-effective designs. These designs were constructed in a virtual environment ahead of onsite progress in order to test assumptions and interactions. This federated BIM strategy enabled all project stakeholders to work in a truly collaborative manner.


Using ProjectWise as the common data environment simplified access to current information, saving considerable time tracking amendments, while minimizing risk. Grontmij used MXRoad and OpenRoads to deliver template-based designs allowing all parties to virtually review full pavement layers and construction depths. Integrating i-model technology with Bentley Navigator provided a process to analyze more than 200 clash detection rules during the design phase. The Bentley Navigator federated model was pivotal in ensuring that virtual inter-disciplinary consultation meetings led to highly productive design reviews.
  • Grontmij implemented a federated BIM strategy to facilitate collaboration with three different clients, and among a multi-disciplined team of 200 people dispersed across six locations, to deliver a 10-kilometer dual carriageway in Manchester, England.
  • Using ProjectWise as a common data environment allowed Grontmij to develop downstream workflows that supported their use of Bentley modeling tools, enabling the team to produce more coordinated, accurate, cost-effective, and buildable designs.
  • The innovative use of Bentley products in a digital design-based BIM methodology helped minimize risk and facilitated information mobility for the optimal collaboration needed to deliver this GBP 100 million project.
  • “Grontmij as Design Partner and BIM manager has worked in a truly collaborative manner with both our client and the local councils, across 6 locations, creating in excess of 160 models to date. Working in a common data environment, whilst encompassing the federation and clash detection process has been a significant step change for us as a designer, but the value gained by such an approach is also quickly apparent including the improved integration of the individual disciplines. Without the innovative use of Bentley products (MicroStation, MX, Open Roads, MX Drain, Navigator, i-model Composition Server (formerly i-Model Composer), and ProjectWise in a digital design-based BIM environment, delivering this project would have been infinitely more difficult and certainly much riskier. ”

    Alistair Webb head of engineering Grontmij Ltd.