• National Highways Gantries

Delivering a new carbon efficient generation of motorway gantries for the UK

Following an exciting win of the RIBA competition to design the next generation of motorway gantries in the UK, Useful Studio have been appointed by National Highways to develop the the concept through Preliminary Design. Working in close collaboration with Expedition Engineering and the Jacobs and Atkins Realis JV we have successfully reduced the carbon and material use by half and created a solution that minimises on-site works.  

Our design and technical innovations for the family of gantries aims to make them more elegant for every motorist. We have proven a carbon reduction, dramatic Capex and Opex cost reductions, and extended life by implementing a leaner, lighter steel construction without compromising the structure's strength and resilience.  The competition design is a significant first for National Highways and the Department for Transport. We have been able to prove how the government, acting as an innovation champion, can get better value and more sustainable performance from public funding by choosing specialist designers who are not normally part of the large infrastructure framework agreements. 

Our gantry design 'family' has been pared right down to use low-carbon electric-arc furnace weathering steel to give the gantries very low maintenance. We have also scaled down all the key components to optimise their size and shape, leading to a 50% reduction in material for each gantry, and a further similar reduction by replacing the normal block foundations with a sculpted lean plinth. 


National Highways
Preliminary Design
Team Credits:

Client - National Highways

Structural Engineer - Atkins Realis and Jacobs