Sept-Oct 2021, Vol 32 No.5
Geosynthetics a growing industry
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Sept-Oct 2021, Vol 32 No.5
Geosynthetics growing importance
In this issue we look at geosynthetics and their use in construction. The history and current innovative uses now available to the market PVC pipelines Off-grid solar power Compact excavators Remodeled bathrooms Construction timelines
Uganda: Nobert Turiyo, Selina Salumah Namuli Botswana: Dickson Manyudza, Gerald Mazikana Ethiopia: Haimanot Tesfaye, Ruth Girma Tanzania: Tom Kiage Malawi: Anderson Fumulani Ghana: Samuel Hinneh, Caleb Donne Hadjah Zambia: Susan Kandeke Zimbabwe: Chiedza Chimombe Rwanda: Collison Lore Nigeria: Seni Bello
REGULARS Editor's Comment 3 Corporate News 4 Events 5 cover story: 6
Geosynthetics A growiing industry
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5 best practises for managing a construction timeline
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5 tips on how to maintain compact excavators
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Maisha Developments at Tilisi 22 Sarova Panafric in extensive renovation
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Compact excavators have advanced radically in the last years. Here are 7 compact excavator maintenance tips to make the most of your uptime and safety.
Sept/Oct 2021 Volume 32 No.5
Editor's Comment Geosynthetics have proven to be among the most versatile and cost-effective ground modificaion materials. As the industry continues to grow, new and innovatie products are being brought to market They come under various names depending on their nature, characteristics and material used.
Initially geosynthetics were not used in critical applications, they were used for safety or to cater for poor workmanship but today they are used for many essential purposes.
Maisha Developments As Live, Work and Play communities gain traction in Kenya, developers have realized that investing in these zones is a sound decision due to the projected good returns
Their application areas are numerous and persistently growing. The major functions are separation, reinforcement filtration drainage or containment.
In this issue we take a closer look at this exciting material and what it portends for the construction industry
Sarova Panafric Hotel Sarova Panafric Nairobi, an iconic hotel in the Kenyan capital is undergoing major renovations that will give the hotel a completely new and modern look with expanded facilities.
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Nairobi, Kenya Tel: +254 20 2679808 Email: email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org
Ghana Agent Image Consortium 1st Floor, The Ecobank Building, Tesano. Tel: 233(0)30 223 2728 I 233(0)274807127 I +233(0)206299159 Fax: 233(0)24 882 8286 Email: email@example.com, Calebhadjah@gmail.com
Nigeria Agent Rahma Associates B23/24, Aishetu Emoewa Plaza, 196, Iju Water Works Road, Ifako Ijaye Lga,Agege, Lagos. Tel: 234-1-7347860 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Kenya Agent Northwest Ventures Ltd P.O. Box 16414 - 00100 G.P.O
Rwanda Agent Kolline & Hemed Inc., B.P. 3328, Kigali, Rwanda E-mail: email@example.com
Zambia Agent Dayflex Limited, Dedan Kimathi Road, Lusaka, Zambia. Email: firstname.lastname@example.org Tanzania Agent: Group Africa Publishing Ltd email@example.com Dar-es-salaam
July/August 2021 | CR
Mecalac unveils major evolutions to its MDX site dumper range
Mecalac has announced a series of major evolutions to its site dumper portfolio. The first will see all new six-tonne 6MDX and nine-tonne 9MDX models, fitted with optional state-of-the-art hydrostatic transmission. The second evolution concerns the availability of the ROPS (Roll-Over Protective Structure) foldable roll bar, making the cabin optional on these new models.
Moldtech Participates in Mombasa Ring Road Project This project, which has Japanese funding, included the construction of motorway bridges using Aastho IV and Aastho VI pre-casted and post-tensioned girders. The Aasho IV girders have a length of approximately 30 meters and weigh around 48 tons whereas the Aastho VI come in a length of approximately 40 meters and a weight of 81 tons. Moldtech came up with a customized design which included a cambered casting bed and special arrangement to make the mould compatible with the post tensioning operations. The total supply for these items included 400 meters of casting bed and 200 meters of mould sides. This allows the client the demould and use the sides again while the previous casted girders complete their curing process on the casting bed before their removal to the stockyard.
Widely used across the construction equipment industry, the adoption of hydrostatic transmission replaces mechanical transmission with fixed gear ratios. This ensures easier operations without gear shifting and provides the added benefit of responsive dynamic braking. The addition of hydrostatic transmission also guarantees improved operator comfort, thanks to smooth and controllable acceleration. Alongside featuring hydrostatic transmission, both new models will be available with the option of either an integrated cab or all-new ROPS foldable roll bar. Setting the standards in site safety and featuring a stylish ground-up design, the all-new ROPS models are easy to transport between job sites and allow operators to work in low height areas with ease. The structure is easily foldable, thanks to a handle and gas strut, which means folding and unfolding the ROPS is safe and requires minimal manual effort. Because the ROPS roll bar has significantly fewer components than a cab, it is an economical choice, but still offers superior operator protection.
Apart from the Aastho girders moulds, the client also requested socalled plank moulds which fabricate pre-stressed hollow core deck slabs. The hollow core is achieved by inserting void formers for which Moldtech designed a special tooling to compensate the uplift force and keep these formers in place. A total of 130 meters of casting bed was delivered together with 8 hinged mould sides with height of 60cm and a length of 14.7 meters. The stressing head has a capacity of 435 tons and includes slackening cylinders for the de-tensioning of the strands prior to cutting them.
Reinforcing geogrids offer roads without potholes and cracks – every driver’s dream Manufactured in the Czech Republic, the ADFORS GlasGrid product line offers several types of fiberglass geogrids for reinforcing asphalt pavements designed for fast, easy and efficient installation. The use of reinforcing geogrids can be divided into three types of applications. Area-wide repairs, local repairs and special repairs. For area-wide repairs with application to a flat surface (existing or new surface), self-adhesive geogrids are the right reinforcing solution enabling quick repairs without the application of tack-coat under the grid. By pressing the grid against the surface, the adhesive is activated and adhesion occurs. Geocomposites that combine 4
geogrid with non-woven fabric are a suitable alternative for milled surfaces. They are laid in a fresh emulsion. After curing, the required adhesion to the surface occurs.
Geogrid can also be used for special repairs of surfaces overlaid with mastic asphalt to eliminate asphalt flowing during the curing process and protect the surface against micro-cracks. Constructions or repairs of commercial parking areas and tram lanes are good candidates for the ADFORS GlasGrid application.
SAINT-GOBAIN ADFORS CZ offers solutions for local repairs of asphalt pavements in critical spots like potholes, joints, utility trench and around manholes. The composite geogrid – patch – consists of a fibreglass grid, non-woven fabric and a thin layer of modified asphalt for perfect adhesion to the surface. ADFORS GlasGrid PG significantly reduces repair because no bonding spray is required for application. A ring-shaped patch can be used to protect the areas around manholes. ADFORS GlasGrid product line offers several types of fiberglass geogrids for reinforcing asphalt pavements
CR | Sept/Oct 2021
WINDABA 2021, 7-8 October 2021
Buildexpo Africa from 12 to 14 May 2022 at Nairobi, Kenya
The South African Wind Energy Association (SAWEA) has opened its registration platform for WINDABA 2021, unveiling the theme, ‘Renaissance of the Wind Energy Industry – Delivering Economic Benefits for SA’ for this premier sector conference.
Buildexpo Africa is the only show with the widest range of the latest technology in building material, mining machines, construction machinery and heavy equipment. At the 23rd edition of Buildexpo, East Africa’s largest building and construction fair, we bring you, exhibitors, from over 40 countries who are the finest in infrastructure development.
The two day event, which returns to the CTICC, after the 2020 hiatus, is scheduled to take place from 7-8 October 2021. Now in its 10th consecutive year, the event is once again supported by the Global Wind Energy Council (GWEC).
Find what suits you best from about 14.3 million business prospects during the three-day event, with over 10,000 products, equipment and machinery on display across an expanse of more than 10,000 square meters. The last event witnessed international pavilion participation from India, Turkey, China, Italy, Malaysia and Germany.
Speaking to the theme, SAWEA CEO, Ntombifuthi Ntuli said. “We are celebrating the rebirth of the wind industry this year, hence the theme is aligned with the positive development in the sector. Last year we saw the Ministerial determination for procurement of renewables and other energy technologies being issued, promptly followed by the long awaited Bid Window 5, which was issued this March, after a 7-year internal period,” said the CEO.
Over the years, we have grown to cater to the demands of not just the Kenyan market, but of the whole region of East Africa. This mega expo is the ideal forum for international players to showcase their products and services to the huge market in Africa.
Totally Concrete Kenya brings expertise, technology, and products together for an exchange of ideas and innovations. Opening the door to exciting developments in the world of concrete and cement equipment to the region’s key decision-makers, this co-located showcase welcomes an international line-up of top-tier manufacturers and distributors . We bring over 8,000 construction professionals to you under one roof, over three days. The Big 5 Construct Kenya ensures that you meet with key decision makers and distributors at the event. We help you achieve your business objectives and increase your sales pipeline with our Lead-Retrieval app. Scan and capture details of all visitors to your stand and achieve ROI through tangible leads..
- Association of Consulting Engineers of Namibia
- Architectural Association of Kenya
- Institute of Quantity Surveyors of Kenya
- Institute of Botswana Quantity Surveyors
- Tanzania Institute of Quantity Surveyors
- Institute of Engineers of Kenya
- Construction Regulation Board (CRB)
- Association of Consulting Engineers of - Kenya
- Association of Professional Societies of East
- Association of Ethiopian Architects
- Ethiopian Association of Civil Engineers
- Kenya Property developers Association
- Construction Contractors Association of Ethiopia
-Town and County Planners Association of Kenya
- Association of Consulting Engineers Nigeria
- Zimbabwe Institute of Quantity Surveyors
- Institution of Surveyors of Kenya
The Big 5 Construct Kenya 24th to 26th Novemer 2021
- Tanzania’s Registration Board of Architects and Quantity Surveyors (AQSRB)
- Association of Professional Women Engineers Of Nigeria
- Zimbabwe Institute of Engineers
South Africa - ASAQS
- The Construction Industry Federation of Zimbabwe (Cifoz)
- South African Council for the Quantity
Surveying Profession - Khuthaza ( Women for Housing)
Ghana - Ghana Institute of Engineers
- Concrete Manufacturers Association
- Architects Registration Council
- Green Building council of SA
- Ghana Institute of Surveyors
- South African Property Owners Association
- Ghana Green Builders Association
- Master Builders South Africa
- Ghana Institute of Planners - Association of Building and Civil Engineering
- Council of Registered Builders of Nigeria - The Nigerian Institute of Architects - American Association of Petroleum Geologists Africa Region - Nigeria Society of Engineers - Nigeria Institute of Architects - Building and Construction Skilled Artisans Association of Nigeria (BACSAAN)
Contractors of Ghana
Uganda Institute of Professional Engineers (UIPE) &
- Association of Building and Civil Engineering
Uganda society of Architects
- Institute of Namibian Quantity Surveyors
Uganda Institute of Surveyors of Uganda
- Zambia Institute of Architects (ZIA)
Sept/Oct 2021 | CR
Geosynthetics; Adding value to infrastructure projects
eosynthetics comprise of an extensive range of products available in the market and these can be categorized as Geotextiles, Geogrids, Geonets, Geomembranes, Geosynthetic Clay Liners Geotextile Encased Columns and Geocomposites Geosynthetics are manufactured from different polymers like: polyolefin (Polypropylene and Polyethylene, with a very high chemical resistance) or polyester (PVA, glass, aramide). Usually in the overall project, geosynthetics are categorized through their role or function in the design or project such as any other engineering materials. There are 7 functions recognized for geosynthetics and they include the following: filtration, separation, reinforcement, drainage, barrier; surface erosion control, and protection. At the beginning, geosynthetics were not used in critical applications; they were mainly used as ‘buffer’ for safety, usually to cater for incorrect installation or poor quality workmanships. Almost 100 years later, geosynthetics are now widely used in many civil and mining sectors as a key-role player in the overall project, which can be the reinforcement of roads, lining of a heap leach pads, or just a simple erosion control on the shoreline (embankment on soft soils, bridge abutments, noise barriers, flyovers, reinforced load transfer platforms LTP on piles). Significant cost savings and improvement of the whole structure can be achieved thanks to the use of Geosynthetics. Geosynthetics in the African Market The geosynthetics market in Africa is growing steadily. While a large portion of the market is limited to mining and allied sectors, geosynthetics has been adopted by various applications in the infrastructure, environmental (landfill) and hydraulic (shore protection, scour protection in harbours, dykes,) sector. Early adoption of geosynthetics in this market was in mining but has proven its benefits in various construction applications which include: rail construction, paved and unpaved roadways, reinforced soil walls (asphalt reinforcement) among others. Nicoletta Rigon, Sales Manager at GEO&TEX2000 points out that geosynthetics has emerged as an effective technology in Africa because it improves infrastructure and protects the environment, 6
CR | Sept/Oct 2021
reducing some effects of climate change. Located in northern Italy, GEO&TEX 2000 is a leading manufacturer in Europe for nonwoven geotextiles. Thanks to investment in high tech machines, they offer high quality products suitable for roads, highways, railways, artificial basins and erosion control projects. As Africa’s infrastructure develops and urbanizes, the load on natural resources will increase. Geosynthetics can be used in a wide variety of infrastructure challenges, right from mining applications to ground stabilization in pavements, container yards, and many more. For instance, geotextiles can be placed as a separator creating a stable platform for the contractor to work. Geogrids can improve the quality of the pavement layers in order to avoid the use of crushed stone, while geocomposite for drainage can intercept seeping water and geomembranes helps in avoiding any land fill leachate getting into the ground. According to Mr. Victor Ibrahim of ACE Geosynthetics a manufacturer of geosynthetics in Taiwan, the geosynthetics market in Africa is growing. South Africa is still the leading user of geosynthetics, with most of the applications focused in the mining sectors. Non-woven geotextiles, woven geotextiles, Geosynthetic clay liners and geomembranes are the most widely used and requested geosynthetic materials in Africa. “We do expect to see an increased growth in geosynthetics usage in line with massive amount of infrastructure projects ongoing in other parts of Africa, especially in East Africa. With these infrastructure projects, we expect to see further usage of geosynthetic materials such as geotextiles and geogrids for soil/ slope stabilization, reinforcement of roads, highways, railways and pavement application,” Mr. Victor Ibrahim. Francesco Fontana managing Director of Manifattura Fontana a company specialized in the production of added-value needle punched nonwoven geotextile comments that “Enviromental aspects in Africa need to be evaluated even more than in other www.constructionreviewonline.com
parts of the world because of of its precious natural peculiarity Geosynthetics allow us to save a big amount of CO2 emissions compared to traditional technologies with sand, gravel and concrete. This is a huge advantage for the environment.” Techfab India is an India baed company w ith 5 factories that was founded in 2003, with the objective of providing world class geosynthetic products and services to enable owners, consultants and contractors to design and implement reliable, economic and easy to construct solutions for a wide range of geotechnical, transportation, hydraulic and environmental related problems. Market trends Globally, there is a huge emphasis on sustainability and the impact of urbanization on the environment. In the geosynthetics market, the research and development funding and innovation is driven towards more products and technologies that minimize the impact on the environment and allow re-use of different types of material; this is according to Richika Bhawnani of Strata a leading provider of soil reinforcement technology and many geotechnical solutions in India (Geosyntetics reduce the carbon footprint). Geotextile mattress for slope protection”For example, various geosynthetics enable re-use of waste materials and site-won materials (such as ash, slag, poor quality soil etc.). Essentially, it allows for use of locally (possibly marginal) soils and material. This minimizes the effort, costs, and environmental impact produced by importing material from elsewhere,” he adds. Furthermore, according to Michelle Neermal of Maccaferri a designer and developer of complex solutions in the civil engineering, geotechnical and environmental construction markets, the variability of geosynthetics materials is huge, making very difficult for non-expert in the field to make the right choice in design and implementation. “Manufacturers are more and more coming closer to engineers and project manager to assist them with design recommendations, guidelines and even trial testing in order to support the right choice for the project,” she says. The African continent is also experiencing climatic conditions such as high temperatures and long- term exposures to sunlight. This according to Pavel Razbegaev, Head of International Projects Department at PRESTORUS, a multi business engineering company, has resulted to the need for African market and manufacturers take into account such conditions when it comes to design and product choice being placed placed on the table.
most containment applications,” said Peter Hardie. Peter further explains that “It is vitally important to check and confirm that the liner being purchased conforms to the Internationally accepted GRI-GM13 (or our own SANS 1526) specifications. These specification ensure the liners will last in our African sun in terms of UV resistance and offer the maximum life expectancy.” Dam liners Dam liners are essential for preventing water loss from reservoirs and ponds; however it is essential that high quality dam liners are purchased if a long term waterproof solution is required. Predominantly manufactured from (high density) Polyethylene and Polypropylene, these geo membranes are used extensively for the containment of liquids, solids and gases in a variety of applications, including Attenuation Tanks, Flood Alleviation, Dam Liners, Gas Barriers, Landfill baseliners & Capping and process water ponds. These liners will normally be provided in rolls which have to be
“We recommend reinforced and weld free geocells which are favorable with climate change such as our GEOCORD and GEOSTEP products. These geocells are used in design, construction, reconstruction and repair of infrastructure facilities under 1-5 climatic conditions and at temperatures from -65 up to +70°C. GEOCORD can be used with great success to fix the ballast layer in railway clothes and GEOSTEP can be used for reinforcement of slopes,” said Pavel Razbegaev. When it comes to geomembranes, Peter Hardie, Technical & International Sales Manager AKS Lining Systems (Pty) Ltd notes that they are mostly used for very high risk containment applications (either protecting the environment or protecting a client’s asset). “HDPE Geomembrane liners for instance offer many advantages over conventional clay lining systems, not only from a chemical resistance and life expectancy aspect, but also from greatly reduced construction time and additionally carrying capacity in www.constructionreviewonline.com
July/August 2021 | CR
welded together. This requires an experienced welding technician using the correct welding machinery; so as to ensure a proper bond is attained at the seam. Low quality brands offer poor adhesion properties, resulting in leaks from the seams over time. Replacing or repairing leaking linings can be very expensive, in addition to being time consuming and inconvenient. A little extra investment in a high quality liner should keep repair costs to a minimal level. (Proper installation of the liner as well as careful procedures for the installation of cover layers is crucial). According to Philippe Grimmelprez of Mattex Geosynthetics, which is a major manufacturer of woven geotextiles in Dubai – UAE and Non-woven Geotextiles in Al Jubail-Saudi Arabia, can quality Geotextiles offer many advantages for contractors, consultants and governments. In principle are geotextiles, woven or non-woven, used in almost every civil engineering project. Often are the geotextiles used also in combination with other Geosynthetics like Geogrids, Geomembranes, Geocells and Gabions. The selection of the right polymer for the application concerned is the starting point for the selection of the best suitable geosynthetic. Commonly are polypropylene and polyester nonwovens and wovens used and its usage depends on the application and requirement. For the most critical applications and soils is
polypropylene the preferred polymer thanks to its resistance against chemicals (polluted soils and environments with a high PH – e.g. concrete) that often can be found on sites. The excellent mechanical and hydraulic characteristics that can be achieved with polypropylene fibres also contributes to this significant preference. Today – with the current modern technology of Mattex Geosynthetics – can much higher strengths per unit mass be reached than ever before. This high performance geotextiles results in a significant advantage in the product, installation and transport cost. “Mattex Geosynthetics is able to reach strengths that are up to 30% higher than geotextiles with similar weight a couple of years ago. This also leads to significant cost savings as the product is cheaper, more economical to transport and easier to install than heavier products. Contractors, designers, consultants and governments are more aware of the advantages and cost savings that Geosynthetics can bring to a project. Aside the significant cost savings that can be achieved with quality Geosynthetics is this also an environmentally friendly construction method,” he adds. Challenges in the Market The biggest challenge faced in this market is awareness. Like many new technologies, enablement and adoption becomes a challenge. Especially in developing countries where exposure to these products are minimal, it is important to study and understand the use of geosynthetics. According to AKS lining systems Laboratory Manager, a supplier of geomembranes in Africa, challenges in the market include: Inexperienced customers who purchase the cheapest lining option and do not consider the quality of the lining required for their specific application, transport of containers of lining from Port to remote sites; meeting deadlines and time-frames for inaccessible, remote locations and also Problems with Customs clearances relating to consumables and returnable tools As one of the experts in this industry, Strata takes several steps to ensure prospective and existing clients are technically sound with the material. This includes installation guidelines, product guidelines, exhaustive test reports, informative case studies, technical in-person workshops, and several informational videos.
CR | Sept/Oct 2021
Geosynthetics in construction
n the area of geotextiles the most common are the woven and non woven fabrics which as the names imply are filaments that are either woven or randomly distributed in layers. Approximately 75% of geotextiles are nonwoven in the form of heat-bonded staple made of synthetics polymers weighing from 120gm to 250gm/m2. On the other hand the market range of the woven fabrics stands at about 15% made from inexpensive lightweight woven slit polypropylene film weighing up to 2000gm m2. The remaining 10% is accounted for geogrids, geonets and erosion control mats worldwide.
In Africa, geomembrane lining systems are the most common geosynthetic material used due to their suitability in drainage on roads and rail, leach pads, landfills and mine sites. As Eng. John Alexander of Geosynthetics Technology Ltd, explains, drainage geocomposites on the other hand are the most ignored, due to lack of knowledge of their existence by specifiers and cost savings.
The biggest benefit realized is through using geotextiles in construction over wet or clayey areas, especially in remote areas where transport and haulage is very expensive, they have both technical and financial benefits as a new design methodology.
In road construction geosynthetics are used to strengthen base sections, improve surfacing and enhance drainage. The materials reinforce, separate and stabilize subgrade and base materials providing the benefits of reducing aggregate requirements, simplifying construction, increasing roadway life and reducing future maintenance. Geosynthetics also prevent accidents as they are able to withstand large lateral deformations and vertical differential settlements. Road structures can at times fail prematurely due to lateral displacement and weakening of base course aggregate. Geogrids or geotextiles are used to enhance performance or reduce the thickness of a permanent road, even when constructed on a reasonably competent foundation. They provide tensile strength in the earth mass in locations where shear stress would be generated in road works. Moreover, they allow rapid dewatering of the roadbed, and preserve their permeability without losing their separating functions.
Geotextile or geogrid is an important component and excellent alternative solution for railroads battling poor subgrades and the problems they can pose. Geosynthetics are a standard feature in modern track construction for they make a more effective construction method. In railway track construction earthworks in particular, geosynthetics have become requisite. They are
used for separation, filtration and reinforcement in, under and next to the track bed. They prevent materials from wandering off sideways due to shocks and vibrations from running trains.
liners are placed horizontally to the geosynthetic reinforcements, which are attached to the solid waste, and fiber reinforcement to augment the shear strength of the soil liner material and the interface shear strength between the soil liner and texture geomembranes.
Erosion and drainage Geosynthetic components are an integral part of erosion and sediment materials ranging from temporary products such as hydraulic mulch geofibers, plastic erosion control meshes and nettings, erosion control blankets and silt fences to high performance turf reinforcement mats, geocellular confinement systems, erosion control geotextiles and fabric formed revetments. These products are designed to help solve erosion- and sediment-control problems and to provide long-term stabilization by establishing and maintaining vegetative cover. The fabric, which lies beneath various forms of riprap cover (i.e. rock, gabions and mattresses, concrete pattern-placed units, etc.), allows free drainage of water while holding back fines thereby preventing shoreline and other erosion. When it comes to drainage and filtration, layers are used in civil applications to remove moisture or fine particles from the system. Geosynthetics provide a widely convenient, effective and economic alternative to traditional aggregate and sand filtration layers. Their significance is to remove the water and other fluids while providing excellent soil retention, assuring long-term free flowing drainage without soil loss. The applications include retaining walls, sport fields, dams, canals, reservoirs, and capillary breaks. Also the sheet, edge and wick drains are geocomposites used for various soil and rock drainage situations.
Dr. Filshill Archie of InterGeo Services says that one of the largest markets for geosynthetics is the use of geotextiles for paved and unpaved roads, since they act as separators between subbase and aggregates in roadway construction. This can come in very handy in Africa where most roads are unpaved and often unpassable during the rainy season. Their function is to eliminate the aggregate base lost into the subgrade which can reduce the durability of the roadway and create potholes. They also prove great value when constructing roadways over soft soils due to their high strength and embankments that can reduce the quantity of removal of unsuitable soils, adding that, they increase the value of the life cycle analysis.
Amongst the benefits and reasons why civil engineering in Africa should divert and embrace the proven durable and long lasting methods in construction is because geosynthetics are stress free when it comes to installation. They also increase efficiency while minimizing pollution of natural resources by stabilizing areas that are frequently and intensively used by people, animals or vehicles through establishing vegetative cover. Geosynthetics are also known to be resistant to chemicals and biological organisms usually found in soils. They stabilize against degradation due to short-term exposure to ultraviolet radiation.
Geosynthetic reinforcement in landfill applications involve the conventional reinforced soil structures and veneer stabilization with re-inforcements placed along the landfill slope and anchored at the crest. Landfill covers and base
Sept/Oct 2021 | CR
5 Best Practices for Managing A Construction Timeline
onstruction is a vast process. One look at the various stages of construction, and you’ll know just how much goes into its operations. Precisely what it requires is a wellestablished construction timeline to manage the tasks seamlessly. But it is unfortunate that we hardly give it the thought it needs. Naturally, Gantt charts and resource management tools are helpful, but they merely facilitate the process. As such, it is you who needs to give the timeline a fair thought. Always remember- the more time you invest in the construction timeline, the more minor issues you are likely to experience when you implement the plan. Today, we will help you take a peek into the best practices for managing a construction timeline. But don’t forget to take a look at this link before you scroll through for some useful information on making a construction schedule. What Is A Construction Timeline? A construction timeline is a schedule created to manage each task and event seamlessly in the construction project. This is a significant aspect of the construction process as it helps prevent hindrances on the way. It also lets you take a peek into the various resources you require and the teams responsible for each of the jobs involved in the construction process. As such, one needs to invest enough time and brainstorm to create a well-established construction timeline in need. 10
CR | Sept/Oct 2021
1. Get Info And Tools A host of resources, stakeholders, and participants are involved in the construction process. As such, you must start by listing each subcontractor involved in the process. Since several subcontractors are often involved, you need to develop the names to remember them and focus comprehensively on their tasks. Once you have created the list, connect with them and demand the required time to procure the materials. After you procure that information, you may ask them to tell you the estimated duration their part of the project is likely to take. Such a thing helps you to create an accurate estimate or at least anything close. The following solution is to speak to a local code office. This is to extract the list of requirements that are needed to carry out the construction process. Keep in mind that the code restrictions differ based on the kind of construction and materials involved. That is why you must find out about them and perform practical research to ensure the project is compliant. When you budget your project, you need to speak to the bank and evaluate the best time to release the funds. You will also require a steady influx of cash that will help you to continue with the project. So before you start working on the construction, you should discuss everything related to this with your bank, including information relating to the www.constructionreviewonline.com
disbursing of your money. Before you schedule the plan, talking to the bank allows them to have a more fantastic picture of the project and gain comprehensive information about the scheduling process.
every day, depending on your time. Also, keep updating it frequently. A construction daily report template can come to your rescue to track the progress made in the construction project.
2. Collect And Prioritize Tasks You have the tools and context at hand. But that is not all. You have to take a step forward and create steps to make the project plan a complete success. when it comes to Managing A Construction Timeline. This is when you need to create the tasks to be carried out during the construction process. Without creating the construction tasks, it will become difficult for you to create an accurate construction schedule. So, all you have to do is build a comprehensive list of every job you need to cater to for a successful construction process.
The Bottom Line Make sure that you create a construction schedule precisely by keeping the essentials in mind. Doing this will help you to make room for a successful construction project in the long run. It will also help you to maintain a seamless and disciplined working system throughout the time.
One of the best tools to use for prioritizing tasks is to implement a work breakdown structure. This will help you to visualize the deliverables. As soon as you have your jobs nearly complete, it will be easier for you to organize them in order. The WBS can help you out with this. You can also use Gantt chart software that will help you to spread the tasks over a project timeline.
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3. Create Duration If you want to enhance the effectiveness, it is best to add duration to reach a task. So once you have them in order, you can list down a start and finish date for each. So if you are working on Gantt chart software, you will find the duration in a bar chart. Make sure that the duration for each task that is created is realistic for you to achieve. Also, do not forget to regard the climate and weather predictions to develop a more accurate duration. 4. Allocate And Implement We all know that tasks cannot be completed by themselves. But, another thing that needs to be regarded is that simply allotting the work to the teams can become confusing in the construction timeline. This is because there are already multiple subcontractors to track. But if you want to distinguish the groups and the works, color coding tasks can be efficient. So it will be more efficient for you to determine who is working on which project as soon as the implementation phase comes to action. 5. Review As Much As Possible We all know that the construction timeline is quite complicated. It also demands permanent monitoring that can be a problematic experience all the time. But the problem is that if you do not monitor and review during the project, the changes may send you off track. That is why you must check the tasks and the project as much as possible. Track your schedule
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Sept/Oct 2021 | CR
ACCURATE STEEL MILLS LTD
YOUR PARTNER, WHATEVER THE SITUATION We continue to write to you in a better, yet still challenging economic and global landscape. As most of you know, globally the world is emerging out of the pandemic (ever-slowly) with restrictions being lifted and travel starting to resume. Industries and companies that have long remained closed are starting to kick back into life, while government assistance schemes are slowly unwound. In the steel industry, most of us have characterized the last 18 months simply as a ‘rollercoaster’. A sudden shock to the system when the pandemic hit, to continually feeling like this is an everlasting game of catchup as supply continues to struggle to stifle demand. Emerging out of the pandemic seems to have brought a number familiar challenges, and some that are more unfamiliar. From our perspective, prices will continue to remain elevated for the rest of the year. This is not necessarily to do with the global demand price. In fact, we are seeing global steel value decline slightly as raw materials move lower from their highs. However, the two major factors dominating all Kenyan imports are as follows: •
The continued horror story around freight. Freight rates continue to be up to almost three times as high as they were 18 months ago, with less space for allocations and less vessels using the route to Africa. Those lucky enough to get container allocations are completely at the mercy of whatever shipping lines chose to charge them.
The exchange rate has shown no sign of improving. We wrote two months ago about a KES/USD exchange rate at the 108.3 level, but currently write to you with an exchange rate at 110.8. The last time this level was approached towards the end of last year, we saw Central Bank intervention so we would be realistically hoping for the same to bring some sort of control.
The reason to understand all these points is to recognize at what point the prices in the market can go lower. When can customers benefit from a reduction in price as it seems like prices are continually higher? In our view, unless the freight situation can be brought under control and the demand for containers slightly drops, only then will we realistically see the cost of our raw materials go down. And that is when we can lower the cost of the goods for our valuable customers. As was the case last month, we still believe that you should position yourselves with steel purchase for whatever purpose; we believe that the costs will continue to rise with each passing month. We have noticed a lot of projects trying to forward book their project materials to save costs, and we believe this to be a smarter idea, especially with raw material shortages we see towards the end of the year. Do not get caught waiting for a price reduction that ends up putting your project delivery at risk as you endlessly wait. Accurate Steel Mills continues to remain at your service, whatever the market situation. We are proud to announce that we are providing FREE MEDICAL GRADE OXYGEN to hospitals within the country, as approved by KEBS from our internal facilities. All we require is requisition orders and serial numbers of cylinders, drop off and pick up of the cylinders once they are filled. We will continue to support the economy and do our part, whilst you do yours and stay safe during this time!
- Avraj Bhachu The writer is a director at Accurate Steel Mills Limited, one of the largest suppliers of steel products in Kenya.
CR | Sept/Oct 2021
Sept/Oct 2021 | CR
Turning to Off-grid solar power supply
lmost half of the people in the world without access to electricity live in Africa and the vast number of them live in the rural areas where access to on-grid solar power supply has been slow in coming owing to the colossal investments needed to put up transmission lines though even if this were done the energy deficiency currently facing the continent would still make this a fruitless undertaking. This offers a unique opportunity for off-grid solar units to be availed in these remote areas enabling communities to benefit from the many advantages of having access to electricity bearing in mind that Africa is a continent blessed with vast quantities of sunlight throughout the year, Benefits Whether it is a simple solar lantern, a small household system or a larger system able to power a hospital’s needs the changes in the lives of the people are nothing less than revolutionary. Take for instance the availability of solar lighting. This alone helps communities to cut down on the use of kerosene or candles that are far costlier than what higher income communities in urban settings spend on the same utility yet those using the lanterns have far less income hence immediately there are cost benefits to be realized. In addition the use of solar lighting increases the productive hours available allowing income generating activities to continue for longer hours while also enabling students to read for longer hours as well. Providing refrigeration for medicines and for 14
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powering healthcare equipment are just some of the health benefits derived by providing electrical power along with eliminating the emissions from candles and kerosene that contribute to carbon emissions into the atmosphere. In addition to all this, the beauty of solar is its scalability that allows customers to upgrade with time from solar lanterns to large systems that can power more home appliances. However as one scales up to larger systems it is essential that one gets proper maintenance service locally. Revolution Several governments in Africa have come to realize the advantages that tapping solar energy has in enabling them to meet their development goals targeted at the eradication of poverty. As solar PV product costs fall and technologies are developed that offer greater efficiencies solar could turn out to be the revolution in energy supply in Africa in a similar way that the mobile phone is for communication. They both offer significant savings by helping Africa leap frog forward without having to rely on first constructing costly infrastructure consisting of power lines and power generating stations. Getting Policy right Setting up policy frameworks is key in order to remove uncertainly and ambiguity in the sector. Creating consumer awareness is also imperative as is the need to ensure proper regulation in order to avoid dumping of sub-standard products into the markets that would harm consumer trust. As in all businesses there is also the need to develop the provision of financing of the sector right through the value chain www.constructionreviewonline.com
so as to spur growth and uptake. Tax incentives and removal of barriers to the importation of solar products should also be considered while providing training in order to develop skilled manpower in the sector. One country that has made great strides in the development of solar energy is South Africa which before 2010 had no significant solar installations but due to a more proactive institutional stance, the country now aims to produce 9,600MW of solar power by 2030. Currently about 1GW of solar power is fed into the national grid making it one of the top 10 global solar power producers. In 2014 alone the country brought online the 22MW Herbert1 project the 50MW De Aaar Project and the 44MW Touwsrivier project and the 96MW Jasper Solar power plant. The key to South Africa’s success was the government’s commitment which saw the formation of the Independent Power Producers (IPP) office and a related programme that ensured that Eskom the local energy utility purchased the energy produced by the IPP’s supported by government guarantees. This system needs to be emulated across Africa
so that this private public partnership can help accelerate the development of solar power plants across the continent. Pricing The cost of solar installations has seen a steady decline in the last 10 years due in part to the reduction of the cost of solar modules however government tax incentives have also played a major role spurred by commitments made by countries at the UN climate accord in Paris last year in which agreements were made to cut carbon dioxide and other green house gas emissions that are associated with fossil fuels such as oil and coal. In Africa the use of solar power has become necessary because it is quicker and less costly to setup in remote areas where no grid lines exist and offers the added advantage of being scalable The dramatic fall in the cost of PV has occurred as the industry has scaled up manufacturing and incrementally improved the technology with new materials. Installation costs have come down too with more experienced and trained installers entering the market. Financing During the Powering Africa Summit in Washington
Sept/Oct 2021 | CR
CR | Sept/Oct 2021
DC, the World Bank launched the Scaling Solar programmewhich aims to create a viable market for private solar power projects in Africa that will help governments increase the supply of energy for millions of residential and commercial consumers across the continent. Under the programme, large-scale photovoltaic solar power can be quickly and economically developed to increase the supply of electricity to national grids and improve the reliability of power services for households and businesses. Scaling Solar provides a straightforward package to help countries determine the size and location of projects, then auction them competitively to developers. The initiative combines World Bank guarantees, MIGA’s investment guarantees, and IFC financing to mobilize privately funded solar projects that are connected to the grid. A simplified process and suite of contract templates significantly speeds this process to enable initial electricity production to begin within two years of initiating an engagement. On the more micro scale one solar company in East Africa is providing solar to many rural households at 35 dollars upfront and a further 50 cents per day for one year Recently the company closed a $19 million financing round led by Generation Investment Management, and revealed plans to reach one million homes in East Africa by the end of 2017. It already reaches 275,000 homes. Yet, M-Kopa’s key innovation is using the mobile phone to show how solar energy can be marketed at scale in Africa. According to Gilles Cattin, Director Sales Management IFS of Business Unit PV SCHMID Group, it is important to secure PPAs (Power Purchase Agreement) from local states or investors in solar farms. Gilles added that one needs to have reliable installers who will provide maintenance and after sales services. SCHMID Group BU PV is an Equipment Manufacturing Company which provides turn-key production lines from wafer to module. They are undertaking a turn-key line of 500 MW capacity in South Africa. Product innovations Most solar units convert about 23 percent of sunlight to electricity. This is low and offers more scope for technological development in order to increase efficiency and storage. Mr Ruan van Rooyen of Lumax a South African company that is a primary distributor of Renusol solar mounting systems in Southern Africa concedes that solar power is an effective, sustainable energy solution that addresses a market currently nearly untapped in Africa. However he points out that there are challenges in logistics and post installation security of the installed assets In the storage department on the other hand, most batteries are made from either crystalline silicon or thin-film semiconductor material. Silicon cells are more efficient at converting sunlight to electricity, but generally have higher manufacturing costs. Thin-film materials typically have lower efficiencies, but can be simpler and less costly to manufacture. At the high end are called multi-junction or tandem cells which are used in applications requiring very low weight and very high efficiencies, such as satellites and military applications. Ultimately what urban users want is to get off the grid completely but this won’t happen soon but what is apparent is that solar energy consumers are still on the grid but use it for backup. In the future however judging by current trends technological advances will continue to offer ever more attractive products to consumers making the dream more of a reality.
5 tips on how to maintain compact excavators
ompact excavators have advanced radically in the last years. Boosted systems and competencies have allowed them to become mainstays on construction sites. Here are 7 compact excavator maintenance tips to make the most of your uptime and safety. Fluids and lubricants An active maintenance routine begins with a day-to-day check of fluids, as well as coolant, hydraulic fluid and engine oil. If any of these levels are low, be certain to fill-up with the manufacturer’s recommended type of fluid, paying specific attention to categorizations, as well as viscidness for the operating environment. It’s also significant to keep these parts clean and use clean rags while checking levels to avoid impurities. It’s also imperative to frequently oil the machine at recommended interludes, taking into consideration the application and temperatures the machine will be operational in. Manufacturers usually recommend the use of a quality lithium-based versatile grease to oil all main pivot points, such as cylinders, booms, and blades Filters. There are several filters on a compact excavator for the fuel, engine, air and hydraulic systems, and each may have different service interludes. When dirty or totally blocked, a filter can directly influence performance and compromise delicate components. The majority of industry excavators have air filter limit indicators intended for the purpose of forewarning operators to maintenance requirements. To avoid system contamination, it’s dangerous not to remove the filter until the mandatory time. Fuel Most manufacturers stipulate the use of clean, superior No. 2 or No. 1 grade diesel fuel. Operators with machines that regularly work in cooler climates may choose the option of specifically formulated blends 18
designed to avoid gelling. At a minimum, ultra-low sulfur diesel fuel must be used in these machines to cut exhaust emission levels. Depending on construction site environments, owners and operators must also be conscious of water separation that can happen in a fuel filter as a consequence of a lower quality fuel supply. Undercarriage Conceivably the most apparent wear item on the excavator undercarriage is the track. Most of compact excavators use rubber tracks and the life expectancy of the track is mostly reliant on the surroundings they are exposed to and the user’s functional habits. Tracks should be inspected on a day-to-day basis to look for cuts, tears or areas that bare the steel imbeds. Any punctures could let moisture or contamination to go into the track. The most significant undercarriage interval item to observe is track tensioning. A loose track is likely to de-track and will be harmful to its valuable life.
CR | Sept/Oct 2021
Cooling system An effective cooling system depends on on satisfactory airflow and suitable coolant level. If either is missing, it can fail performance, lead to an overheat state — or worse yet — hasten engine damage. Proper cooling system maintenance comprises checking the airflow through the system and checking coolant hoses for leakages. The radiator, condenser and oil cooler can be cleaned by applying low pressure air or water, but use care not to damage the radiator’s fins. Electrical system The electrical system of most compact excavators uses a 12-volt battery and fuses for the main reason of shielding this system in the occurrence of an electrical overwork. Always replace botched fuses with like kind and amperage rating. Battery cables should be fitted and uncontaminated. Examine for deterioration on the cable ends and the battery terminals. Prevention can normally be alleviated with suitable dielectric grease www.constructionreviewonline.com
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July/August 2021 | CR
BATHROOM & KITCHENS
Bathroom Remodel Ideas on a Budget
id you recently purchase a home and you need a bathroom remodel? Have you been living in your house for decades and are tired of the look of the bathroom? Is it simply not as functional as you hoped it would be? Regardless of your reasons, if you’re working on a budget, you’ll be glad to hear that there are tons of ideas you can use to completely or partially remodel this essential part of your home. Keep on reading for some inspiration. Leave the pipes in the same place What you need to take into consideration when planning this Bathroom Remodel is the fact that moving the pipes or getting all new plumbing will cost a lot of money. So, keep your budget in mind. If the layout is simply not good, you might have to do this but that also means that you might not have enough money to get all the latest fixtures. Look for a way to keep sinks, showers and toilets as close to their original place as possible. Sinks are usually the least expensive to re-position, so only move them if you can.
walls. Tone down the tiles While you might think that floor-to-ceiling tiles look beautiful, you need to be aware of the price of such an endeavour. Seeing as how the expenses can quickly stack up, you should look into some alternatives. Other than using mildew-resistant paint and wallpaper for the walls, you can also save some money by using vinyl or linoleum for the floor. Reclaimed wood panels and concrete work wonders as well, so that is something else to think about. If you’re splurging on material, try to limit yourself to one statement wall. Save money by buying local Another great way to save money is to purchase from local vendors and look for materials that can easily be harvested in your area. This means that you will not have to pay for the shipment and delivery and the chances are high that the material is widely available near you and potentially very cheap.
Find one item to splurge on Just because you’re working on a budget, it doesn’t mean that you can’t splurge on an amazing piece you find. However, you should keep it down to just one or a few items. If you plan on making this piece the focal point of the bathroom, you might be able to cut down the costs of other parts of the room. If the freestanding bathtub is going to be the centrepiece, you can use more affordable tiles for the floor, for example. If the sink will play this role, the countertop can be more economical. Add a fresh coat of paint In case you are not looking to replace all the elements during your bathroom remodel, simply painting the walls can be enough. This can make a huge difference and will not leave a dent in your wallet. For instance, if your bathroom is currently mostly neutral, you can introduce a bold colour that will give the room an instant facelift. You can also leave most of it neutral but paint one statement wall in a bright colour or a stripe pattern for a dramatic effect. What is more, floorboards can also be painted and give your bathroom a chic update. Just make sure you use wood paint for this project. Put up bold wallpaper Just like paint, wallpaper is also a cheap way to make a big change. This is something you can do on your own, without having to hire professionals and spend even more money on their services. The great thing here is that wallpaper comes in many designs, from floral scenes to geometric grids. Plus, you can even come up with a pattern of your own and have it printed on the wallpaper you will put on the 20
Search through antique shops If a vintage feel is something that you are hoping to achieve, you can also visit some local antique shops and see whether there are any pieces that fit your aesthetic. For example, maybe you can find a unique light fixture or an ornate mirror that will be the centrepiece. You might even be able to find a bigger piece such as a clawfoot tub that you can repaint in a bold shade if that is something you think would look good in your bathroom. Look for deals online On the other hand, you can also look online for the items you need. Luckily, there are many specialized shops that often have products on sale. Regardless of whether you’re looking for floating vanities or quality bathroom accessories, you just need to pay attention to these websites to notice when you can purchase that piece you have been eyeing for a while at a discount. What is more, remember that there are certain dates around which you can find great deals, such as Christmas and Black Friday.
CR | Sept/Oct 2021
Repurpose old furniture pieces Then, maybe you have some pieces lying around your home that you can repurpose for the bathroom. If you have plenty of space and are looking to make this a cosy lounge area, you can add a chair and a side table to the room. Simply repaint them and they will bring a touch of luxury. You can also introduce a bench or an ottoman which can be used as storage as well. Fix up old items if you can’t purchase new ones In case you simply cannot afford to buy a new vanity or bathtub, you can look online for various tutorials on how you can fix these old items up. For instance, perhaps you can paint the outside of the vanity and revitalize it. Maybe taking off the doors and having some open shelving will do the trick. Simply replacing the countertop might be enough. Change the accessories Perhaps you are looking for a small change that will not impact your finances too much. In that case, you can simply swap out some of the accents. For example, upgrade your taps with a newer model that is more water-efficient. If they were chrome before, you can replace them with gold or black ones. This can be done with all the other hardware as well – from light fixtures to drawer handles, towel racks and toilet paper holders. Then, you can change your shower curtain, get a new soft rug and purchase new towels in a hue that will complement the entire colour scheme. Make storage efficient Small bathrooms often have a storage issue. If you can’t fit any sort of premade element in the room, you might have to get them custom-made. However, this can cost you a pretty penny, which is why you have to look for some alternatives. For example, you can go vertical with open shelving. Plus, you can easily purchase shelf brackets and wood boards at a local hardware store and do this on your own. Depending on where you install them, they can be used to display things or hide them away. Something else you can consider is hiring a fabricator that can make a nice steel frame for an open vanity and then adding the shelves yourself. Create your own artwork If you want some décor for the bathroom, there’s an affordable way to do that. If you have a creative hobby, you can put up your own artwork and proudly display it. Then, you can also simply print your favourite photos or works of art, frame them and hang them. This is a lowcost project that can add style to the room.
BATHROOM & KITCHENS
aving the option of not touching certain objects has always been important, especially when we talk about public spaces. As we live, the existence of this option has gained new relevance. When exists the necessity to use a public bathroom, it is normal that we want to avoid touching when unloading the toilet. With this need in mind, OLI develops toilets that allow the discharge to be carried out only with the approach of the hand, avoiding contact and transmission of bacteria. We talk about Hydroboost, a sustainable technology that allows you to generate energy through the entry of water into the flush. Electronic flush plates, such as the Electra III model, also have the advantage of having a system that makes it resistant to eventual acts of vandalism, which is also ideal for bathrooms in public spaces such as shopping centres or airports.
TOUCH? NOT ANYMORE Ultra-thin thick glass flush plates are another of the options available in various colours and follow the latest trend because they have LED light to activate the discharge. The first porcelain flush plate winning 4 world prizes, Moon, completes the wide range of OLI products where unloading into the toilet can also be activated without resorting to touch. Thinking about who wants to renovate the bathroom without having to resort to deeper works, maintaining the No-Touch feature to activate the unloading, OLI has developed a solution with the most demanding quality standards on the market - QR-INOX. The best option for rapid remodelling of the bathroom. It doesn't require intervention on the walls and you can use the existing water inlet and outlet connections.
About OLI OLI is the largest cistern manufacturer in Southern Europe. Its brand is present in 80 countries on five continents. Over the years, OLI has created products that have, on a global scale changed the daily experience in the bathroom. Their “Inspired by water” signature concept embodies the company’s mission to place innovation at the service of water conservation, aiming to make the world a better place, thus protecting the planet and all life. OLI is recognized for constantly studying new and better solutions that increase water efficiency and accessibility for people with reduced mobility. Committed to sustainable development, the brand develops versatile solutions with a contemporary design for application in new construction, rehabilitation and renovation projects. OLI believes in a water-efficient bathroom that is comfortable, accessible and safe for all to use. OLI will continue to be defined by innovation. OLI is looking for business partners and projects to join their portfolio in Africa.
IN-WALL CISTERNS FOR BATHROOMS. LOOKING FOR DISTRIBUTORS.
Sept/Oct 2021 | CR
s Live, Work and Play communities gain traction in Kenya, developers have realized that investing in these zones is a sound decision due to the projected good returns. The main attraction of these communities is excellent physical infrastructure coupled with the availability of all kinds of facilities that one needs to make comfortable living. These include good residences, hospitals, schools, shopping and leisure facilities, all in a secure and serene environment.
Kenya currently has a number of grand Live, Work and Play developments at different stages of progress. Tilisi, located off Nairobi-Nakuru highway and close to all the major bypasses, is one of these communities. It is a 400 acre master-planned, mixed use development. With a budget of US$ 40m just to develop infrastructure, Tilisi has attracted several investors who have snapped up the fully serviced land parcels to build houses, logistics centres and other developments. Maisha Developments is one of the investors who have secured land at Tilisi and are putting up high quality residential units of varying configuration. Maisha are not new to property development in Kenya. They have extensive experience in hospitality, residential and commercial projects. Their past projects include Radisson Blue at Arboretum, Solitaire on General Mathenge Drive, West End Towers, Greenspan Housing and Mall in Eastlands, Capital Centre on Mombasa Road and Warwick Centre in Gigiri. They are also behind Tilisi Views, another exclusive residential development within Tilisi. Maisha are currently developing two distinct residential developments dubbed Maisha Mapya and Maisha Makao. Set on 11 acres, the developments offer a superb quality standard of living at exceptional value. When complete, there will be a total of 600 units of 2 and 3 bedroom configurations. Maisha Mapya’s blocks are Ground plus 4 floors, with a total of 350 apartments while Maisha Makao’s blocks consist of Ground plus 5 floors, with approximately 250 apartments in total. The developer has tried as much as possible to cater for different tastes and pockets. Some ground floor apartments feature a private garden while some other units have master bedroom balconies, lounge balconies, extended master bedroom and extended living rooms.
CR | Sept/Oct 2021
ARCHITECTURE, CONSTRUCTION AND FINISHES Maisha Developments are using Aluminium form work as their building technique. “This is quite different from the traditional method of construction”, says Head of Marketing, Viraaj Shah. “This technique will increase the speed of construction. In addition, smooth and accurate finishes will be achieved. The structure will be on concrete, which makes it more durable and strong. The reinforced concrete that will be used is more fire resistant”, he adds.
lopments at Tilisi
The units in Maisha Mapya will feature: • • • • • • • • • • •
Modular aluminium formwork system European style fitted kitchen with laminated countertops Laminate flooring in the lounge and bedrooms Imported porcelain tiles in wet areas Fitted European style wardrobes and doors Toughened glass shower screens Z Section steel casement windows and doors with 6mm laminated safety glass TV points in certain bedrooms and lounge High quality energy efficient LED light fittings in all apartments and common areas Provision for inverter, washer/ dryer 1 parking space for each apartment with option to purchase additional parking space
Sept/Oct 2021 | CR
The units in Maisha Makao will feature: • • • • • • • • • • • • •
Modular aluminium formwork system Fitted and Europe style kitchen with granite worktop Integrated imported hob, oven and extractor European laminate flooring in the lounge and bedrooms Imported porcelain tiles in wet areas Fitted European style wardrobes and doors Heavy grade stainless steel kitchen sinks and sink mixers with cold water supply Provision for under-sink water heater in the kitchen Toughened glass shower screens RHS steel casement windows and doors with 6mm laminated safety glass Provision for inverter, washer/ dryer 1 parking space for two bed apartment with option to purchase another, 2 parking spaces for three bed apartment
OTHER FEATURES AND COMMON SERVICES The developer has provided parking for one car for each apartment. However, Maisha Makao 3-bedroom owners get two parking spots. An additional parking spot is available for purchase if available. Maisha Makao comes with high speed elevators from KONE. A standby generator for the common areas safeguards against power outage from the utility service provider. There is ClearVue fencing on the perimeter of both Maisha Mapya and Maisha Makao, a gate house for security as well as adequate water storage. Amenities include: • Area for a gym • Convenience stores • Club house • 25m heated swimming pool in Maisha Makao • 15m x 30m multipurpose court in both developments
CR | Sept/Oct 2021
PRICING AND BUYER OPTIONS A buyer is able to purchase the units in cash, instalments or mortgages. “We are able to adjust and adapt to the buyer’s instalment schedule”, says Viraaj. “However, the price will change depending on the NPV. Our standard pricing mentioned are the instalment prices.” PROJECT SCHEDULE Maisha Developments is going to be built in phases. “Since we are using aluminium formwork as our building style, we will have instances when a whole block is up and the next block is still to come up”, says Viraaj. “With this in mind, Maisha’s blocks are estimated to be completed 18 to 21 months once the construction on that particular block has started.” The project broke ground on 20th March 2021. CHALLENGES According to Viraaj, a few challenges have been experienced so far. “Approvals were a challenge and they were overcome by perseverance. However, it has delayed us”, he reveals. The volatile exchange rate also called for careful homework to avoid losses. The developer is ordering early to lock prices. And like in most other sectors, Covid-19 brought about uncertainties especially after the spending power of potential clients was eroded. However, Viraaj is optimistic, revealing they have overcome this through advertising and at no point have they paused their plans or construction.
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NIRMA HOLDINGS LTD
Kipkabus Road, Ngara, Opposite Stima Plaza, First Floor Tel: 0722344844, 0722722199 Email: email@example.com
PROJECT TEAM Developer: Maisha Housing Ltd Architects: Block 45 Quantity Surveyor: Tower Cost Consult Structural Engineer: Civil Engineering Design (K) Ltd Main Contractor: Nirma Holdings Ltd Electrical subcontractor: Sunash Electricals Ltd Plumbing Subcontractor: Jaisham Ltd Landscaping: Urban Green Landscapes
We are proud to be associated with MAISHA DEVELOPMENT LTD on their TILISI Projects www.constructionreviewonline.com
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Sarova Panafric in Extensive Renovation
arova Panafric Nairobi, an iconic hotel in the Kenyan capital and one of the best known establishments in the hospitality sector, is undergoing major renovations that will give the hotel a completely new and modern look with expanded facilities.
days. The hotel quickly became the home of cultural theme nights in a celebration of good food, music and ideals. Presidents, leaders and other guests from across the continent visited The hotel, located on Kenyatta Avenue the hotel frequently. near Milimani, opened its doors in 1965 as The Panafric. The name was in line In 1991, The Sarova Group bought the with the spirit of Pan Africanism that was The Panafric and the hotel has been sweeping the African continent in those known as Sarova Panafric since then. www.constructionreviewonline.com
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The US$ 20 million refurbishment is part of the Sarova Group’s continuing improvement of its facilities aimed at offering the best possible experience to its customers. Symbion Kenya were appointed as the lead consultants in this project. The project entails refurbishment of existing Kenyatta Avenue 90 rooms into 84 standard rooms and three suites, nine new rooms bringing the total room count to 96. To complement the new rooms, a new health club consisting of gym, aerobics, spa, changing rooms with steam rooms and saunas has been incorporated. The existing swimming pool has also been refurbished and an outdoor pool bar added. To take advantage of the roof top views, a new steampunk themed 7th floor restaurant and bar has also been
CR | Sept/Oct 2021
added to the exciting Nairobi roof top bars and restaurants. The public areas will also be renovated in keeping with the newly refurbished rooms. The popular Flame Tree restaurant which is synonymous with the Sarova Panafric Hotel will also receive an uplift of interior decor and additional indoor seating space. The reception and entrance porte cochere, meeting rooms and addition of an executive residents lounge will form part of the final construction phase of the planned renovations and additions. Although Symbion has undertaken many hospitality sector projects in the past, the consultancy says this project is different. “The Sarova Panafric Hotel is unique because of the fact that it’s one of the oldest structures
constructed in the 70’s where headroom heights between slabs were minimal allowing limited space for incorporation of new MEP services which are a new feature”, says Architect Pascal Obala. “These limitations of headroom also affect any new building being done adjacent to the existing structures creating a very challenging situation in terms of provision of services.” “The site is also unique in that it features very hard solid rock which required plasma rock breaking technique where new foundations were being done, the fact that the excavations were next to existing foundations meant a lot of control had to be exercised on amount of charge applied to break the rock making the process slow and tedious,” says Obala. He adds that the addition of a new roof restaurant was also faced
with structural challenges of the existing slab’s inability to carry weights required for the roof top restaurant, necessitating creation of a new suspended steel slab designed to carry the new loads. “The renovation has also been undertaken at a very unique period in the hotel industry due to the Covid -19 pandemic which meant reducing aspects of the project due to budgetary constraints entailing revisions of some of the planned ambitious additions and expansions”. The building exterior has been remodeled from the 70’s design that featured decorative fins that had become a hindrance to the maintenance of the building’s façade. The fins were demolished and replaced with wide acoustic windows to cut out the noise from Kenyatta Avenue and reduce solar ingress, effectively reducing energy
Sept/Oct 2021 | CR
spend on air conditioning. The renovation also incorporated solar water heating panels on the roof top reducing sole reliance on the boiler for hot water requirements of the hotel. The incorporation of a water recycling plant to recycle water required for flushing washrooms is another aspect aimed at conserving water and reducing fresh water demand from the mains supply. The washrooms feature electronic taps that dispense water on demand avoiding wastage. The toilets also feature water saving flushing systems. Lighting is on demand with light sensors fitted in public corridors and washrooms, automatically switching on when one approaches the space.
Valley Road Shell petrol station on the lower side of the site. The uppers side access to the Flame Tree restaurant next to NSSF building has been retained. The construction contract was awarded on 17th October 2018 and the contractor broke ground on 5th November 2018. The project’s first phase consisting of hotel rooms will be handed over to the client by end of July 2021. The Health Club, Gym and Changing rooms are also expected to be completed alongside the rooms with the spa being completed by end of August 2021. The public areas interior design is expected to be completed towards the last quarter of the year for implementation in 2022.
The new facility will still maintain the existing Kenyatta Avenue access adjacent to
tamcon consulting engineers
Kisauni Road, G28, Nairobi West Tel: +254 - 20 – 6003952/ 58 P.O. Box 63030 – 00200 City Square, Nairobi Email: firstname.lastname@example.org 32
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PROJECT TEAM Architect: Symbion Kenya Limited Structural/Civil Engineer: Tamcon Consulting Engineers MEP: Umakant International Ltd. Quantity Surveyor: Tower Cost Consultants Ltd Main Contractor: Cementers Ltd Painting and Artwork: Colortunes Kitchen Equipment: Sheffield Steel Systems Limited Furnishings: Techpro Systems Limited Aluminium Windows and Glazing: Prime Aluminium Casement Limited. Roof Contractor: David Engineering Sail Shades: Instarect Limited Window Cleaning Systems: Bells Associates Limited
TECHPRO SYSTEMS LIMITED Off Kasarani Road, Nairobi Kenya Tel: +254 728 006006, +254 737 006006 Email: email@example.com Website: http://www.techprosystems.co.ke/
INTERIOR FITOUT CONTRACTORS JOINERY FURNITURE STARON SOLID SURFACE
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Sept/Oct 2021 | CR
How to conduct error-free field pressure tests on PVC pipelines
ield pressure testing of PVC pipelines has proven to be a contentious issue in South Africa, with consulting engineers and installers often having different interpretations of how testing should be conducted. DPI Plastics has developed a ‘howto’ guide on field pressure testing to ensure that the integrity of a pipeline is not compromised as a result.
the condition of test equipment like end caps, hoses and pressure testing machine prior to commencing the test. “If equipment leaks, the test will be compromised. Calibration of test equipment, especially pressure gauges, should be checked. Inaccurate pressure gauges will not only compromise the integrity of the test, but may lead to over-pressurisation and subsequent damage of the pipeline.”
Modern plastic pipes are manufactured under controlled conditions and the testing regime at the manufacturing facility includes hydrostatic pressure testing of pipes and joints. This ensures that they are capable of delivering on minimum performance requirements. When the pipe is laid on site, however, pipes are joined outside the control of the pipe manufacturer.
All pipes require large volumes of water to conduct a field pressure test, and Snyman advises that a check should be undertaken to ensure that there is sufficient water available on site prior to the commencement of the test. “What’s more, any concrete work, like thrust blocks, should be given sufficient time to reach full strength prior to testing, in order to preserve their integrity.”
The field pressure test is therefore used to test the integrity of the pipe joints which were completed on site. This test is covered by the SANS 2001:DP2 – Medium pressure pipelines standard. DPI Plastics product manager Renier Snyman notes that although the standard attempts to lay down the rules thoroughly, it is often misinterpreted or misunderstood. “The most commonly misinterpreted test parameters are pressure, duration and length,” he explains. Snyman stresses that it is important to check 34
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Temporary end caps fitted for testing purposes should be restrained against end load movement under pressure. “It is important to bear in mind that end load forces are high and restraints for end caps must be able to withstand these forces. For example, 500 mm class 12 PVC pipe subjected to 18 bar pressure generates an end load of approximately 18 tons directly onto the end caps. According to Snyman, the pipes also have to www.constructionreviewonline.com
be properly backfilled in order to keep them from rising up from the trench during testing. “It is important to keep the joints exposed, however, as it will make inspection for leaks much easier and quicker,” he continues. Determining test length Pipelines can sometimes be several kilometres long, and it is therefore beneficial to test the pipeline in sections. “This method is more accurate and takes less time to inspect the joints. It also requires less water for each test, and is quicker to fill the line. If a problem arises, it will also be noticed sooner and can be rectified before kilometres of pipeline is laid,” Snyman points out. Requirements for determining the test pressure The reason for performing the pressure test is to establish that the pipeline does not leak. Test pressure is raised above the operating
pressure of the pipeline to allow the pipeline to settle under that pressure and to highlight possible leaks that would otherwise only develop after some time under pressure. With this in mind, the following requirements for test pressure are set out in SANS 2001: DP 2. First requirement: The test pressure must be 1.5 times the working pressure of the pipeline, up to a maximum of 10 bar. Above 10 bar, the test pressure must be the working pressure of the pipeline plus 5 bar. The requirement refers to the working pressure of the pipeline, i.e. the pressure the pipeline will operate under. It does not refer to the pressure class of the pipe. All pipes require large volumes of water to conduct a field pressure test For example; a pipeline with an operating pressure of 16 bar should be tested at 21 bar (16 bar + 5 bar). Snyman notes that the mistake is often made to test at 1.5 times operating pressure, regardless if the
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operating pressure is above 10 bar or not. “In this case, the difference between the correct pressure above and a 1.5 times operating pressure (24 Bar) is 3 bar.” Second requirement: The test pressure must be between 1.25 times and 1.5 times the operating pressure at any point in the pipeline. This requirement makes allowance for variation in the test pressure. Due to differences in static head in the test section, it allows the test pressure to vary between 1.25 and 1.5 times the operating pressure at any point along the test section. Test procedure Once the section of pipeline is ready for testing and the ends have been sealed and secured, Snyman states that it is advisable to fill the line slowly, to ensure that air is not trapped during the filling procedure. “It is also preferable to fill the pipeline from the bottom to push air out at the top of the pipeline. A breather should also be left open at the top of the pipeline for air to escape.” If filling the pipeline from the highest point, Snyman advises allowing sufficient time for air to settle to the top before starting the test. “It is good practice to leave a filled pipeline for 12 hours for air to settle at the highest point. The air must be removed before commencing the pressure test.”
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When determining the test pressure, it is important to consider the location of the pressure gauge on the pipeline. If the pressure gauge is at the highest point along the test section, one has to add the static head (vertical height difference in metres between the lowest and highest points) of the test section to the reading on the pressure gauge. After pressurising the test section slowly, the stop ends and thrust blocks should be checked for movement. If movement is detected, the test must be immediately terminated for repairs to take place. Once the pipeline has reached test pressure, the joints must be inspected for leaks. If leaks are found, the pipeline should be depressurised, and leaks repaired before restarting the test. Pipelines can sometimes be several kilometres long, it is therefore beneficial to test the pipeline in sections Pipelines can sometimes be several kilometres long, it is therefore beneficial to test the pipeline in sections
“If there are no visible leaks and the pipeline has stood under test pressure for the required duration, close the isolation valve between the test equipment and the pipeline. After an hour has elapsed, restore the test pressure and measure the amount of water needed to do so in litres. SANS www.constructionreviewonline.com
2001: DP 2 contains equations, depending on the pipe material, to calculate the allowable amount of water, in litres, needed to restore test pressure in the pipeline,” says Snyman.
pipes of nominal diameter below 400 mm. During this time, the pressure inside the pipe should be maintained by means of a suitable pump.
As an example we consider a test section of 250mm PVC-U Class 16 pipe, 500m long. The equation for PVC pipes is as follows: 0.01 x OD mm x Test Length km x √Test Pressure MPa. Therefore 0.01 x 250 x 0.5 x √2.1 = 1.811 litres. Snyman highlights that if more than 1.811 litres of water is needed to restore test pressure, the test failed and one should find the leak before retesting.
Once the test duration has elapsed, an additional hour is needed to perform the allowable pressure drop test. If the pipeline fails the pressure test, the leak needs to be located, repaired and the test repeated. “All air must be bled out of the pipeline before repeating the test,” observes Snyman.
Anyone performing a field pressure test should inspect test equipment beforehand to ensure it is calibrated and leak free. When pressurising the pipeline, one should take into account the location of the pressure gauge and any static head that may add to the test pressure.
Although SANS 2001: DP 2 is specific about the test duration, Snyman warns that the prescribed duration is not well-known and often not adhered to. “I have come across pipelines that have been pressurised and left for 24 hours under pressure. Such practices not only defeat the objective of the field pressure test, but may also damage components in the pipeline.” He reveals that the test duration is three hours for pipes of nominal diameter 400 mm and above, and between one and three hours for
“It is very important to ensure that all air is removed from the pipeline before pressurisation and to pressurise the pipeline slowly. If the correct test procedure is followed, one can be assured of accurate test results and long service life from the pipeline,” Snyman concludes.
Sept/Oct 2021 | CR
Wiring Systems: Refurbishment of older wiring systems
ne of the first types of wiring incorporated insulated spacers supporting conductors, in the early stages these were often bare conductors. This was a relatively easy type of installation not ideally suited for homes because electric shock was a great risk. Often when carrying out refurbishment or repairs on an existing building, older wiring systems are sometimes encountered by electricians. For the new generation of electrical installers this can be the first time they have encountered an older wiring system in working operation. It is quite difficult to explain the nature of a wiring system when there is little or no practical information available. An older wiring system does not necessarily mean the installation is unsafe. Lead-sheathed Lead-sheathed cables were another type utilized, which consisted of tinned copper conductors with rubber insulation, often having a cloth covering, then an outer lead sheath. This proved to be a popular type, due to the ease and speed of the installation methods. The fixing methods were bottle- style clips which were prefixed along the route and then the lead- sheathed cable was laid along the route and the clips used to secure the cable in place. The lead sheath formed the circuit protective conductor and it was essential that this was maintained to ensure that the sheath could not become live. At each termination there was a clamp system that secured the lead sheath to a metal box. This type of cable offered an element of mechanical protection but the rubber insulation was liable to deterioration over a period of time, often due to excessive heat or overloading at the terminations of accessories. If lead-sheathed cable is found within an installation, it can be inspected and tested to determine the condition of the lead sheath and the rubber insulated conductors, but it is advisable to leave it undisturbed until such time as the wiring system can be replaced.
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Wooden trunking Vulcanized India rubber insulated cloth covered conductors encapsulated in a wooden- style trunking system, which had normally two grooves for the conductors to be located. This was a time- consuming process where usually carpenters were used to complete the system for the early electricians. The rubber insulation was liable to cracking over a period of time, often due to excessive heat or overloading at the terminations of accessories and there was the inherent fire risk associated with the wooden system. Should this type of system be encountered, the only course of action would be replacement, although a detailed description including photographs and the retention of the system for display purposes would be greatly appreciated. Tough rubber sheath Another popular type was, rubber insulated, tough rubber sheath cable (TRS) which was easily recognized by the black coloring, similar to the modern PVC cable. This once again proved popular because the flexible nature of the cable assisted the speed of the installation. However, the mechanical protection for this cable was almost nonexistent. Also, the rubber was liable to deterioration depending on whether it was being subjected to overloading and/or high ambient temperatures. This cable type was also susceptible to damage from exposure to direct sunlight. The resultant deterioration often led to the loss of the insulating properties where the rubber became dry and inflexible, normally resulting in cracking of the sheath and inner core. When the TRS cable is discovered, it can be inspected and tested to determine the condition but it is advisable to leave undisturbed until such time as the TRS wiring system can be replaced. Polyvinyl chloride The introduction of polyvinyl chloride as a means of www.constructionreviewonline.com
insulation revolutionized the electrical wiring industry by providing an insulation product with a long lifespan originally expected to be approximately 25 years but is now still undetermined. The initial PVC cables were installed utilizing imperialsized conductors, 1/.044, 3/.029, 7/.029 and 19/.044 for those who remember them, and it can be difficult to determine their cross sectional area. The introduction of low smoke and fume (LSF) cable to the PVC cable market removed the danger from fire hazards associated with electrical installation fires. When old wiring systems are encountered, it is extremely important to determine the type of system you are dealing with. Failure to be aware of the dangers can lead to an increased risk of electric shock or the risk of fire to the building. Mr. Gregory Raffaele, Vice President of Sales and Marketing at EMSI insists that, temperature resistance, flexibility, new fiber optic and mechanical resistance are important factors to consider when repairing old wiring systems. “But besides all the existing approvals or standards, a contractors and their client should always consider the practical requirements which do not always fall within existing standards,” he adds. “The cable industry is a very traditional industry and trends vary on the applications and products. Chinese competition has been a challenge which has forced some manufacturers to increase their efficiencies and reduce their costs, but has also raised new concerns due to quality issues,” reiterates Mr. Raffaele. Mr. A. V. Shah the General Manager at Coast Cables Limited (CCL) advises that, customers must always look for the best quality when it comes to cables it will power their homes, businesses and livelihood for decades. “They must do their research and purchase original cables from officially appointed distributors. Cheap counterfeit cables can be attractive to consumers until it leads to high costs when they are forced to replace their wiring due to shorts or being underpowered,” he adds.
Coast Cables Limited is a local manufacturer of house and underground cables; plus they import intensely technical and specialized cables from reputable cable manufacturers globally. “We have noticed CCL counterfeit cables countrywide and urge consumers to avoid these by knowing who to purchase original cables from. Eyeballing our cables, one can notice that CCL cables are differentiated from counterfeit by our skin coating technology whereby our original cables are coated with a white PVC on the inside layer and colored on the outside layer,” affirms Mr. Shah. The Administration Manager at Metsec Cables Limited Mr. Davis Ndonye, a local manufacturer of Power Transmission and Distribution Cables; insists that, KEBS needs to be stricter in ensuring compliance by imported cables. Customer awareness should be heightened to counter counterfeit and substandard products. “Competition is high to entry of new manufacturers and imports while consumer awareness is low to medium. Consumers should go for products with extensive variety and sizes, countrywide availability high quality, ISO Certification and Environmental Certification,” he adds. “Metsec cables embody all these quality,” he asserts. In addition, Stephen Liasides of alverncables is of the opinion that the world is advancing in leaps and bounds with regard to technology and this move tends to be more electronic and thus sensitive, automation, interfacing, prohibiting of harmful lead and gasses, to mention just a few. “This makes the products available much better quality and although more difficult to manufacture something one can be proud to put your name to,” he adds. He further advises consumers to consider more than just price since price is only one factor and not the key factor. “Use reputable companies and products. Where electricity is concerned lives are often at stake plus endless costs in downtime,” he reiterates.
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Nirma Holdings Ltd........................................................ 25
Ryce East Africa Ltd....................................................... 11
Sunash Electricals Ltd..................................................... 26
Accurate Steel Mills........................................................ 15
Jaisham Ltd..................................................................... 26
Davis & Shirtliff ............................................................. 15
Doshi Hardware.............................................................. 27
Tamcon Consulting Engineers........................................ 32
Fit Tight Fasteners Ltd.................................................... 16
Techpro Systems Ltd....................................................... 33
Jessop & Associates (Pty) Ltd......................................... 17
Kens Metal Industries..................................................... 19
Ryce East Africa ............................................................. 19
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