Academy awards Silver Medal to Atkins engineer for outstanding commercial success - 20 June 2012
The Royal Academy of Engineering has presented Atkins’ technical director Chris Hendy with a coveted Silver Medal for achieving significant commercial success in the field of structures and in recognition of advancing the cause of engineering in the UK.
A construction specialist with unrivalled expertise in steel and concrete bridges, Chris earned an MA at Cambridge University before joining Atkins in 1992. As a bridge expert his work has taken him around the world fulfilling many roles from project director to technical manager. He has worked on some of the most complex and high-profile projects including the design of the Dubai Metro viaducts, replacing the bearings in the Forth Road Bridge (UK), strengthening the Penang Bridge in Malaysia, the design of the award-winning post-tensioned balanced cantilever New Medway Bridge (UK), the assessment and strengthening of Erskine Bridge (UK), and most recently as a technical advisor on the Olympic Park bridges in London.
An industry leader and author of three seminal books on bridge construction and design, Chris has also played a pivotal role in aligning UK construction industry standards with those of the pan-European Structural Eurocodes, ensuring UK business can compete for European contracts.
Chris said: “It is enormously satisfying for me that civil engineering as a whole has been recognised though this award and, in particular, that it showcases bridge engineering. This is a huge testament to the cohesive and collaborative bridges community we have built up in Atkins and the importance it attaches to innovation and sharing learning and knowledge. These are essential ingredients to remaining competitive in an increasingly global market and I am proud to have been able to contribute to this.
“I believe Atkins has worked hard to provide an environment where these characteristics are valued and I think our new Design Principles which are designed to develop the best possible solution given the project constraints concept will help push this further.”
Chris will be one of four recipients of the medal at the Academy's annual awards dinner at London’s Royal Opera House on 26 June.
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The Academy's Silver Medals were instigated in 1995. They are awarded annually to engineers who have made outstanding contributions to British engineering but have been working as an engineer for no more than 22 years. Up to four medals may be awarded each year.
Founded in 1976, The Royal Academy of Engineering promotes the engineering and technological welfare of the country. Its fellowship - comprising the UK's most eminent engineers - provides the leadership and expertise for its activities, which focus on the relationships between engineering, technology and the quality of life. As a national academy, it provides independent and impartial advice to Government, works to secure the next generation of engineers, and provides a voice for Britain's engineering community.
Atkins (www.atkinsglobal.com) is one of the world's leading engineering and design consultancies*, employing some 17,700 people across the UK, North America, Middle East, Asia Pacific and Europe. It has the breadth and depth of expertise to plan, design and enable some of the world's most technically challenging and time critical infrastructure projects.
*It is the largest engineering consultancy in the UK (New Civil Engineer Consultants File 2012) and the 13th largest global design firm (Engineering News-Record 2011).
Recent projects include:
- Major infrastructure works, such as the design and programme management of the civil works for the Dubai Metro red and green lines in the UAE;
- Key rail projects – providing architectural and engineering design services on Crossrail, Europe’s biggest civil engineering project in London, UK, and designing stations, tunnelling and track systems for Gautrain, South Africa’s first high speed line;
- Renewable energy schemes – transformer platform design for the Thanet offshore wind park in the North Sea;
- Multi-year architecture-engineering construction management services for the US National Park Service, including projects such as rehabilitation of the Furnace Creek Visitor Center and Administrative Complex at California’s Death Valley to meet the US Green Building Council’s Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design Gold certification standards;
- High profile transport planning and urban design – our innovative scheme to deliver a diagonal crossing at Oxford Circus in London, UK, has helped tackle the problem of pedestrian crowding;
- Water and environmental projects – critical programme management of storm protection works in the wake of Hurricane Katrina in New Orleans and Southern Louisiana in North America, providing expertise in coastal restoration, engineering, environmental and GIS support to rebuild defenses and protect habitats;
- Multidisciplinary building design – Northwood Primary School in Darlington, UK, is an exemplar project which raises standards for environmental design and community engagement.
Atkins was named among The Sunday Times 25 Best Big Companies to Work For 2011, won Consultancy of the Year in the CIBSE Low Carbon Performance Awards 2010, received the first ever certification of the Carbon Trust Standard awarded to an engineering consultancy in the construction sector, and was included in The Times Top 50 Employers for Women 2011 and The Times Top 100 Graduate Employers 2010. Atkins was also construction and civil engineering sector winner for the fifth consecutive year in the Target National Graduate Recruitment Awards 2010 and was awarded a RoSPA Gold Award 2011 for excellence in control of health and safety in the workplace.
Atkins is the official engineering design services provider for the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games.