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Gloucester Gateway Motorway Services Area

Key facts

Year Completed



Glenn Howells & AFL




26 HA


Buckingham Group Contracting

Build Type

New Build

Breeam Rating


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In 2012 BWB were appointed as the Civil and Structural Engineer for the new £40m dual-sided Gloucester Gateway Motorway Services Area (MSA) between Junctions 11a and 12 of the M5. BWB were brought on board during the Tender Stage by Buckingham Group Contracting and played a key role in successfully value engineering and optimising the on-site infrastructure to meet both the contractor's programme as well as the client's expectations. We are tremendously proud to say BWB's role in this project won us the accolade of ACE Engineering Excellence Project Award 2015.

The sites lie on the edge of the Cotswolds and are a partnership between Westmorland, who own and operate the popular Tebay MSA in Cumbria, and the local charity Gloucestershire Gateway Trust.

BWB were responsible for the detailed design and approval of the new north and south facing M5 slip roads, on-site levels and earthworks strategy, foul and surface water drainage design including an array of sustainable drainage systems, on-site road and external pavements, foundations to MSA building and PFS along with associated retaining walls.

Key Challenges

Given the site's location on the edge of an area of outstanding natural beauty, the proposed development had to be very sensitive to its local surroundings. This involved shielding much of the site from key vantage points by means of large screening mounds and curving green roofs over both the MSA building and PFS. It involved a considerable level of earthworks design that reshaped the land minimising the development's visual impacts whilst achieving a cut/fill balance.

The drainage strategy took a holistic approach which linked together an extensive array of sustainable drainage features. The result was a site that reduces flood risk, maximises bio-diversity and creates amenity areas to be enjoyed by all.

The northbound MSA was completed in 2014 while the southbound MSA opened to the public in May 2015.