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VOL 12.2 MARCH 2011 R38 incl. VAT

IN THIS ISSUE: Corrosion in roof sheeting & fasteners

Putting a lid on the Cape Town Stadium Museum of Art Glass & Aluminium innovations



Volume 12 • Number 2 • 2011


On the cover


12 Resnick Pavilion

Rheinzink products are not only appealing from an architectural point of view. They are also an asset in construction: they make a valuable contribution to preserving the building fabric. To find out more about intelligent roof and façade-cladding systems, go to page 50.


Cover picture courtesy of Stefan Antoni Olmesdahl Truen Architects

04 Colour trends for 2011 08 New security barrier concept


VOL 12.2 MARCH 2011 R38 incl. VAT

IN THIS ISSUE: Corrosion in roof sheeting & fasteners

Putting a lid on the Cape Town Stadium Museum of Art Glass & Aluminium innovations

16 Nestle’s new green building


Trade Comment

88 CEO of Italtile Ltd 89 Corobrik CEO reflects on prospects for 2011


93 School will save R50 000

Rheinzink Titanium zinc comes to the South African construction industry from Europe


where it has been used as roofing and exterior


wall cladding for over two hundred years

20 Sourcing, specifying & designing

in inland and coastal climates. The metal’s

26 All-in-one light weight tile adhesive

desirable attributes include long-lasting

30 Construction chemicals

service life, low to no maintenance, ease of


formability as well as numerous environmental benefits. The arrival

32 Trends and innovations

of zinc and its applications is timely, both from a building technology

38 Roller-style shutters

and an environmental perspective.

40 Flexible interior spaces

Rheinzink Gmbh & Co KG have their factory in the Ruhr region of Germany where they produce the material used for Roofing, Façade


Cladding and Water Drainage for the world market. Rheinzink have

42 Challenges and solutions

marketing and sales outlets in 32 countries. Rheinzink (South Africa)

50 Zinc - valuable building product

has established their marketing office in the Western Cape, with

62 Sandton City extension

Stephen Wilkinson as the Business Manager. Stephen has been with


Rheinzink for 13 years, seven of which were in the United Kingdom

66 Offices of the future

and his wealth of knowledge in the usage of the products is shown

74 Avant-garde wall coverings

by the growth of sales throughout South Africa since 2005.

78 Beat mould and moisture

Rheinzink is stocked in South Africa through the distributors Safintra (Pty) Limited as well as Two Oceans Metals CC. The various applications are applied by skilled German craftsmen who are currently training local artisans in the intricate and specialised technique and of hard metal crafting. Rheinzink has been specified on commercial and residential as well as on Government projects such as the new Forensic Laboratories



in Cape Town as well as the renovation to the Central Governments Offices in Pretoria.

WINNER: SAPOA Property Publication of the year.

FINALIST: PICA Awards 2010

Insights from the editor

New products abound! This issue of Walls& Roofs is once again filed to the brim with exciting projects and new products that will be sure to excite you. See all the latest products on the market from page 4. In our Hi Spec feature we look at products you can specify for use in projects where performance is key. The products featured here have been used at, amongst others, Medupi Power Station, heavy traffic roadside interchanges and we also focus on you can add value to building products. The realm of office space design is ever evolving. Depending on the company ethos and culture and their way of work and their processes, work space design has evolved to focus on efficiency, productivity and ergonomics. We take a close look at the latest products, design features and thought leadership in this arena. Read more on this from page 20. Our roofing feature this issue takes a look at corrosion of roof sheeting and fasteners: we examine the Classification and designation of corrosion resistance, the standards and expected life span of roof fasteners. Where does it all go wrong? What impacts the longevity of your roof? Read all about the correct fastener specification from page 42.

publisher: Media in Africa (Pty) Ltd Contact information: International: Tel +27 12 347 7530 • Fax +27 12 347 7523 E-mail PO Box 25260, Monument Park, 0105, Republic of South Africa First Floor, Unit G, Castle Walk Corporate Park Cnr Nossob & Swakop Streets, Erasmuskloof Ext. 3 the WALLS & Roofs team: Editor: Marlene van Rooyen – 083 327 3746 Key Accounts Consultant: Shayne Lessing – 082 945 5030 Founder: Schalk Burger (1943 – 2006) Journalist: Adrienne Brookbanks – 082 468 4566 Business Unit Coordinator: Lorraine Coetzee Publishing Manager: Liezel van der Merwe Financial Director: Fanie Venter Financial Manager: Sietske Rossouw Accountant: Denise Bakker Design & Layout: Ilze Janse van Rensburg Proofreader: Angus Reed Reproduction & Printing: Business Print Centre WALLS & Roofs focusses on the aesthetics of walls and roofs and technicalities pertaining to the aesthetics. Readers are welcome to contact us for any information. WALLS & Roofs is published six weekly by Media in Africa (Pty) Ltd. The views expressed by contributors are not necessarily those of the editor or publisher. We accept no responsibility for the accuracy of information published.

Condolences The tragic accident that befell the Italtile family came as a massive shock to the industry. We would like to offer our condolences to their colleagues at Italtile and their family members during this trying time. Our thoughts are with you all.


Marlene van Rooyen

Get the latest product & trade info







Colour trends for 2011 NCS Colour has joined forces with international colour trend forecasters Global Color Research, creators of Mix Publications, to compile NCS Insight. This booklet, which is compiled in a handy fan-deck format, showcases 30 of the most important colours for 2011, lifted from the Mix Trends forecast books covering the year ahead. “Transition is key for 2011. We’ve begun to emerge from the slump of the economy so the colours selected are a little more vibrant and positive than in recent seasons – a sign that people are beginning to dig into their pockets again and look to the future. We look to the realities of our world, encouraging ourselves away from solitude and into the richness of life,” explains Lisa Taylor, the Southern African Development Community distributor for the Natural Colour System (NCS). The colours for 2011 reflect a stronger level of optimism. Neutral and yellow colours are prevalent in NCS Insight and the palette of colours is also starting to become warmer, opening out in chocolate browns, rich berry red and a vibrant orange. “Green continues a steady growth in fresh vegetal shades through to aqua, while mysterious deep blue and purple cover the darker end of the spectrum. Grey scale tones are cool and smoky, contrasting well with warmer plaster shades in the palette,” says Taylor. NCS Insight can be ordered as separate sheets in different sizes and gloss format or translated into RGB and CMYK in NCS Navigator on www. Complete trend forecasts for 2011, 2012 and 2013 can also be found on the website. v NCS Colour Centre SA Tel: 011 486 3190 E-mail: Website:

“Wipe and go”

paint uses same constituents as non-stick frying pans Graffitex has launched a new range of “wipe and go” paint coatings that can get rid of ingrained grime (including graffiti) without damaging the paintwork. What makes these paints different is that they contain polytetrafluoroethylene (commercially known as Teflon, the material that is best recognised for its use in non-stick frying pans). The Graffitex product was developed locally some years ago for specialist applications and has now expanded into a complete range of water-based, plastic wall coatings for interior and exterior use, as well as a roof coating. A Cape Town company also known as Graffitex was launched in 2010 with the sole rights to manufacture and supply the


NCS Colours for 2011 Product name: NCS Insight 2011 Colours: • NCS S 5040-R20B • NCS S 1080-R • NCS S 0565-R • NCS S 0530-Y90R • NCS S 8010-Y50R • NCS S 0585-Y70R • NCS S 2060-Y40R • NCS S 1040-Y20R • NCS S 0550-Y • NCS S 0510-Y • NCS S 0560-G40Y • NCS S 3050-G20Y • NCS S 4050-B90G • NCS S 3060-B40G • NCS S 1510-B80G

• NCS S 0505-B • NCS S 1030-B10G • NCS S 4550-R90B • NCS S 2020-R80B • NCS S 1515-R40B • NCS S 4050-R60B • NCS S 7502-R • NCS S 3010-Y40R • NCS S 1005-Y50R • NCS S 0502-Y • NCS S 0804-R70B • NCS S 2005-B • NCS S 3502-R • NCS S 8502-B

Colour Samples: 30 fully coated standard NCS colours. Gloss: Semi matt 15-20 units. Samples: Sample size 35 x 104 mm. Print: The NCS colour notation printed on the reverse of each colour sample. Weight: 40 grams. Price R350.00 per fan with 20% of sales going to Animal Anti-Cruelty League

products to market. According to Graffitex owner Simon Beauclair, the technology is user- and environment-friendly. “The nonstick qualities of the coating prevent it from absorbing even marks such as pen, crayon and permanent marker. This makes the products ideal for hospitals, schools, day-care centres and other high-traffic areas where The non-stick qualities of the coating quick and easy cleaning is a prevent it from absorbing even marks such priority,” says Beauclair. as pen, crayon and permanent marker. Graffitex also manufactures a range of water-soluble sprays specifically designed to remove marks like these, along with daily dirt and grime, from the surface of the coatings simply by wiping them away. Even extreme graffiti can be removed using a heavy-duty cleaning gel known as “Wipe Out”. v Graffitex Tel: 021 712 9225 E-mail: Website:










New, unique security barrier concept Trellidor has expanded its security barrier offering by launching a security system that is unlike any other currently available on the local market. Called Trellidor Clear Guard, it is an attractive alternative to conventional barriers, consisting of an aluminium frame with a high-tensile stainless steel mesh insert that offers protection without spoiling the view.


e’ve spent two years developing this product in conjunction with Meshtec in Thailand, the company that developed this industrial-grade mesh screen, because the product had to be strong enough to cope with South African crime conditions,” said Nick Sacco, Trellidor’s business development manager.

Trellidor Clear Guard units have undergone rigorous standard tests for security screen doors and windows according to the Australian Standard (AS), including knife sheer, dynamic impact, jemmy and salt spray tests. The product surpassed all of these tests. “We see these security screen doors and windows as a first choice for homes, corporate offices, commercial buildings, hospitals, police stations, eco-estates and game reserves, particularly in those projects where developers and architects are reluctant to specify the usual options in terms of security barriers.” The units can be tailored in both single and double formats to fit a wide range of door and window styles. These include hinged, sliding and French doors, and casement, awning, sliding and fixed windows.


In addition to offering protection against unwanted intrusion, Trellidor Clear Guard also screens out up to 60% of the sun’s UV rays, controlling the internal temperature and improving energy efficiency. They allow air to flow freely into the home whilst preventing pests such as monkeys, baboons, flies, mosquitoes and snakes from getting inside.

Trellidor Clear Guard is manufactured at Trellidor’s SABS ISO 9001-certified Durban factory and is guaranteed against corrosion both inland and at the coast. v Trellidor Tel: 031 582 7460 E-mail: Website:




Builders Warehouse strengthens bond Sika has extended the range of products it brands for Builders Warehouse to offer an entire waterproofing solution available in the retailer’s own-name packaging, with the launch of Builders Warehouse Brick Tite, Bitumen Tite and Slurry Tite; equivalent to Sika BlackSealBrick, BlackSeal-Lastic, and SikaSeal Waterproofing Slurry. The end of 2010 has seen the success of the Sika BlackSeal range and we have no doubt that 2011 will offer the same successes with the new Builders Warehouse ‘Tite’ range. Builders Warehouse and Sika have formed a strong alliance over the years, with the popular retailer introducing its house range made up of Sika products. H2O Tite, Damp Tite and Fibre Tite are all existing products in the Builders Warehouse ownname brand. v

Sika South Africa Tel: 031 792 6500 Email: Website:

100% Made in Italy tile range to transform spaces “Flow”, a new product by Ceramiche Caesar, is the ideal mix between a contemporary look and high technical performance. The product is the result of intensive research and 100% Made in Italy manufacturing, boasting six colours in a comprehensive range of chromatic shades. With its three available surface finishes, natural, bright and miniscratched, Flow can be used in both residential and large commercial venues. v For more information, visit, to which full acknowledgement and thanks are given.


New colours launched for popular exterior paint brand Dulux recently launched seven new earthy shades in their popular Weatherguard exterior paint range. Inspired by natural elements, Weatherguard’s new palette, which includes colours such as Bushveld, Karoo Land and Valerian Clay, was chosen to offer decorators more variety as well as the latest colour trends for 2011. “Though brighter colours are slowly making their way onto exterior surfaces, it still seems that South African consumers prefer to colour the exterior of their homes with a palette that echoes our unique and beautiful outdoor environment. With an increasing awareness of greening our planet, trend mappers confirms our need to connect and co-exist with nature, and what better way to start than with the home,” says Sonica Bucksteg, Dulux’s in-house colour expert. “The new Weatherguard range of colours has been inspired by natural elements. The mesmerising colour display of our local animals also served as our muse. Though Weatherguard’s existing colours remain a popular choice, our new palette has been exceptionally well received with the recently launched shades already making their way onto the exterior walls of South African homes,” says Dulux brand manager Mayan Desai. Weatherguard is a particularly flexible paint in the market and it is one of the most popular brands for jobs that involve covering hairline cracks (measuring between one and two millimetres) which are prevalent in South African plaster work. The paint also hides minor imperfections and is tough, durable and water- resistant.

Fine-textured for exterior walls • Featuring a synthetic rubber binder known as Maxiflex, Weatherguard offers lasting flexibility that enables the coating to expand and contract with substrate movement; • Resistant to alkali, Weatherguard can be applied directly to bare plaster; • It is reinforced with thousands of marble chips and provides a thick, flexible coat; • The paint is water-based, making it easy to clean your brushes and rollers; • Weatherguard allows spreading of up to 6 m²/l and its film build hides minor imperfections. “Colouring our world remains an important part of the Dulux philosophy. And while Weatherguard’s DNA of flexibility and durability will enable the brand to continue doing its job of covering hairline cracks, it will also continue to protect and transform the appearance of South African homes,” concludes Desai. v Dulux Tel: 0860 330 111 E-mail: Website:



CONCEPTS & VISIONS Natural light, which is a challenging element to master in art museums, masterfully floods the gallery via a zigzagged roof with skylights and glazed exterior walls that span the building’s width.


he museum’s marble and glass-clad pavilion expands the museum’s exhibition space by 4 200m2 (45 000 square ft). The single-storey building is entirely open- plan, with a generous amount of natural light filtering through the zigzagging roof. The flexibility of the building is one of the major contributing factors to the beauty of the building because exhibitors can pick the size of their exhibitions, as one isn’t bound to a box of a certain size. There are no inhibiting columns or partitions and visitors are free to choose their own path through the space. A sense of scale in the expansive room is retained through the repetition of small structural details, such as faint columnar forms which rise out of the blank white walls, joints intersecting on the plate glass windows and air grates which break the monotony of the concrete floor. Natural light, which is a challenging element to master in art museums, masterfully floods the gallery via a zigzagged roof with skylights and glazed exterior walls that span the building’s width. “If you took a sectional look at the building, you would notice that the roof is designed to cut the southern light and soak in the northern light,” Renzo Piano says. “Light is what allows you to be rather extreme or radical when you are creating a space for art, without fearing competition with the artwork because light is always good for art.”

Resnick Pavilion The new wing of the Los Angeles County Museum of Art, designed by famed architect Renzo Piano, was opened in October 2010. The building was named in honour of Lynda and Stewart Resnick, whose US$ 45-million donation was the lead gift in Phase II of LACMA’s transformation campaign. Highlighting mechanical components The building’s mechanical systems are pushed to the exterior. Technical units as well as air-handling units are housed in giant, bulbous, duct-like components that are painted bright red. At night, the glass walls that line the pavilion transform the Resnick into a lantern structure. Director of LACMA Michael Govan comments, “The building is more than a building: it expresses a lot of the fundamental


ideas about the future of the museum and the definition of the museum. We wanted a place where the whole mission of the encyclopedic museum – the patchwork of cultures, the art of all time – could be in one place. The Resnick Pavilion is about mixing art of different times and places, but for me it’s just as important to mix audiences and to take forward this idea that we have a town square, that the audiences will mix.” v


Lynda and Stewart Resnick Exhibition Pavilion, Los Angeles Country Museum of Art



Nestle’s new GREEN BUILDING inBryanston Nestlé South Africa unveiled its new green head office located in Bryanston, Johannesburg, in October 2010. Walls & Roofs Magazine had the privilege of an exclusive walk-through, noting some of the key green initiatives (and a number of stimulating design ideas) that the company and the professional construction team have implemented in their state-of-the-art building.


oday the term ‘green’ is used to describe all things environment-friendly, organic and sustainable. For Nestlé, ‘going green’ is our response to the environmental challenges facing us today and enhancing the quality of our working environment. With these goals in mind, three years ago, we embarked on this journey of constructing our new environment-friendly head office,” says Nestlé’s Corporate Affairs Director Ravi Pillay. The new building, which took four years to complete, aims to contribute to environmental sustainability as well as offer an improved employee comfort level. The 10 480 m2 area space features cutting-edge technology which includes special glass that reduces glare, an intelligent lighting system with motion features and electronic dimmable ballasts around the perimeter of the office space. The building’s atriums have been designed to allow the lights to dim and allow natural light to filter through, thus increasing energy conservation. The building’s air-conditioning plant has also been specifically designed to employ ammonia chillers which use 40% less energy. Heat exchange water heaters have also replaced traditional geysers. The company has applied for a Green Star Rating for its new head office. “The awarding process takes 12 to 18 months and we are confident that we will be certified “Green” by then,” says Pillay. The structure of the building will maintain an increase in airflow into the access floor thus ensuring comfort for staff. “We wanted


Artist’s impression of the new Nestlé head office in Bryanston, Gauteng. Boogertman + Partners were the architects for the project.

to create a building that was open and airy to provide good ventilation,” says Etienne van Wyk, Nestlé’s Technical Director. Jaco Swanepoel, the project manager from Nestlé, comments, “One of the requirements for an adequate amount of fresh air in an occupied space is 5 litres of fresh air per person, but we upped the amount to supply 7 litres of fresh air per second, per person.” The 10 480 m2 area space features cutting-edge technology, including special glass that reduces the glare of the sun. The former Nestlé building, which was located less than 5km from the new site, comprised nine floors. The new head office


Natural light flows into the building from central atriums.

was designed in a twostorey, open-space design layout. The floor plates of the building are the size of two football fields. White sound, acoustic ceilings and access floors reduce all ambient noise. “The white sound creates a humming noise in areas where people are working to reduce disturbing chatter and other common sounds in the workplace,” says Swanepoel. Numerous pause areas, a state-of-the-art coffee bar, in-house crèche, wellness centre, baby feeding room and a gym and pet area create a healthy, friendly and comfortable office environment. Livia Wright from Beads was the interior space planner for the project. “The new head office is a result of 4 years of rigorous research, development and hard work to ensure that our economic activity has minimum damage on the environment.” concludes Swanepoel. v Nestlé Tel: 011 514 6000 E-mail: Website:

Rainwater harvesting has been implemented to provide water for the gardens.

Screens and canopies on northern and western façades.



Master Builders green their KZN head office

“We decided on the renovation because we were no longer getting the best use out of the facility. We wanted to ensure that the building and its use aligned with our objective of providing a networking and information-sharing hub for members, industry stakeholders and the public. We also wanted to reduce our ecological footprint by becoming more energy- and water-efficient,” said the Association’s Executive Director, Brandon Abdinor, to the almost 300 members who attended the opening of the building. “It’s a ‘one-stop-shop’ for members of the Association, and will be a mine of information for t the end of last year, the Master the public, DIY builders and people looking for Builders Association unveiled their builders and building products. We believe we have new R10,5-million “green” head office created a platform for members and consumers to in Westville, KwaZulu-Natal. The use to their advantage. The exhibition space will be four-storey building’s impressive spinning wind updated continually and will supplement the longturbines and solar panels on the roof show the standing advisory capability to point people in the organisation’s commitment to lead by example right direction,” explained Abdinor. as well as create an environment for members, Bruce Luyt of LVE Construction, who was the main and the public in general, to make use of the contractor, said the project construction-related facilities. was challenging, particularly because retrofitting had to be carried out while the building was occupied. “There were a lot of firsts for us but a very cooperative client and friendly relationships went a long way to ensuring the success that was attained,” said Luyt. Bruce Clark from Durbanbased Bruce Clark Associate Above: Francois Louw, President of Architects, the official Master Builders KZN, prepares to architects, said the objective cut the ribbon officially marking of the retrofitting exercise the opening of the new facility with was to showcase how an Executive Director Brandon Abdinor.


Green features Airconditioning and lighting have been modified to make more efficient use of natural ventilation and light. The Perspex dome atop the heat-trap atrium was fitted with whirlies expelling hot air and drawing in cool. Solar photovoltaic panels (PVs) are sandwiched between some of the glass panels that make up an extremely large portion of the building. Nearly 200 batteries store the power and inverters create usable voltage. Two six-meter-high wind turbines have been installed on the roof to assist the PVs. The system generates power for computers, essential lighting and other devices linked within the building’s electrical grid. Rainwater harvesting is achieved with six water tanks capable of storing 30 000 litres which provide water for the lavatory cisterns and for the roof garden during periods of no rainfall.


existing building can be retrofitted through the use of some simple interventions. “Everything was done in a visual and accessible manner, such as how the solar water system works, where the batteries are stored, how much electricity is being used at any time and all the other environmentally friendly products and systems that we are implementing,” concludes Clark. v Master Builders Association Tel: 031 266 7070 Website:


Committed to keeping it “green”


he new Ridgeside office development on Umhlanga Ridge, which Grinaker-LTA recently handed over to client The Umhlanga Rocks Property Trust, has the proud distinction of being only the second building in the country to receive a Four Star rating for its design from the Green Building Council of South Africa (GBCSA). This development, which was designed and built in accordance with the specifications set out by the GBCSA, also attained the highest design score ever achieved in the Green Star ranking – a total of 55 points. Ridgeside is an upmarket, four-storey office block with a three-level parkade. The total construction area was 30 183 m2. Environmental considerations are also high on the agenda for Grinaker-LTA on a new project in Montague Park, Cape Town. The contractor’s R156-million contract to build a new Makro store here will see it recycling waste materials and keeping a vigilant eye on the nearby Duikersvlei, which was rehabilitated as part of Montague Park’s development, and forms one of the green spaces in this eco-friendly commercial and industrial park. “As a member of the Green Building Council of South Africa, we are very proud to be part of these green building projects, and have the opportunity to demonstrate our commitment to this form of construction,” comments Grinaker-LTA executive director Neil Potgieter. He notes that the site of the new Makro store is an old fertiliser factory, which was an eyesore and a pollution irritant in the area,

so the removal of this will, in itself, be a great change for residents and businesses in the surrounding areas. “Environmental management is a prerequisite for this project, and we are ensuring that all the stipulations are met,” he adds. Potgieter also stresses that Grinaker-LTA and the developer, the Eris Property Group, are committed to protecting and preserving Duikervlei. This ecologically sensitive area has, since its rehabilitation, attracted an abundance of bird life to the park. The project is due for completion in October 2011. v Grinaker-LTA Tel: 011 578 6200 Fax: 011 578 6384 E-mail: Website:

Ridgeside is an upmarket, four-storey office block with a three-level parkade.



ENGINEERING for education


t the SSI ‘Engineering for Education’ function held in Pretoria during the first week of February, master of ceremonies John Robbie said, “Education is about caring and the Lead SA campaign is about partnerships between the Private Sector and Government, and with this initiative SSI is part of Lead SA.” Representing the Minister of Basic Education, Mrs. Angie Motshekga at the function, Deputy Director- General for Basic Education Paddy Padayachee expressed the Department’s heartfelt gratitude to SSI for the sterling work to date that goes a long way in improving education in South Africa. He said it was clear that SSI is passionate about uplifting education and skills transfer in the country, and reported that the learners supported by SSI had gained 39 distinctions and that two students from Soshanguve had achieved three distinctions each, in Maths, Science and Engineering Graphics & Design. “SSI has risen to the challenge of effectively addressing the country’s technical skills shortage being fundamental to the survival of a developing nation,” he said. “This initiative is evidence of how we can work together and SSI has shown this through investment in the young, as mentoring is a critical learning intervention.” He also commended SSI’s CEO for setting up and pioneering the programme and congratulated the company on its commitment to education in South Africa.He concluded by stating, “Working together we can do more to achieve quality education for all. Partnerships between business and government are crucial to the development of our country.” Naren Bhojaram, CEO of SSI and headmaster of its Saturday Schools Initiative, believes that education is the soul of our country and that it is vital that we nurture our intellectual capability. When asked why SSI started its Saturday Schools programme, he replied, “Because we care and we are committed.” SSI’s Saturday Schools Initiative aims to ‘polish’ students from underprivileged backgrounds who have shown potential, with additional mentoring and tutoring provided by qualified engineers from SSI, to achieve university entrance in the subjects of maths, science and engineering graphics & design. SSI engineers and environmental consultants established its Saturday School Initiative with just one school and about 25 students in Alexandra, Gauteng, following a call in 2006 to the ‘captains of industry’ from the then deputy-president, Phumzile Mlambo-Ngucka, for the private sector to ‘get involved’ in addressing the parlous state of education and lack of technical skills in the country. The initiative has grown; more than 170 students from 18 different schools now attend the SSI Saturday School initiative, operated from six of its branch offices around the country. Attendance at the Saturday School is free of charge; attendees are selected in conjunction with day school heads of departments,


Naren Bhojaram of SSI congratulating Thabiso Baloyi, Saturday School Student; and Deputy DirectorGeneral of Basic Education Paddy Padayachee at the ‘Engineering for Education’ function held in Pretoria where the Ministry of Basic Education expressed its heartfelt gratitude to SSI

the school’s principal and the pupil’s parents. School administrators and teachers are volunteers from SSI’s own ranks of professional engineers, technicians and scientists, and lessons are conducted at the pupils’ day schools in Alexandra, Bloemfontein, Cape Town, Durban, Pietermaritzburg and Pretoria. SSI allocates more than R1-million annually to support the initiative and intends to add more centres in the future. v SSI Tel: 011 798 6522 E-mail: Website: at

A world Record World’s Tallest Building: the Burj Khalifa (formerly Burj Dubai) opened on 17 Jan 2009 at 828 m, the tallest building ever, and the one with the most floors - 160 storeys. If the Mile High project in Jeddah ever gets completed, this will top out at 1 600m!


Local construction firms shifting


to green projects


amco, an international company specialising in climate change solutions, and Trade & Industrial Policy Strategies (TIPS), an independent economic policy research institution, recently released a case study entitled the ‘Construction Industry’s Path towards a Low Carbon Trajectory’ with funding from the British High Commission. According to the case study, the South African construction industry has been increasingly focused on both the introduction of green practices and on energy-saving technologies. Globally, the building sector is said to contribute more than one-third of total energy use and associated greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions in society. Major South African construction companies, such as Group Five and Murray & Roberts, are starting to pursue green practices and projects. This has, in some cases, involved voluntary compliance with the Green Building Council of South Africa’s (GBCSA) Green Star South Africa Office rating tool and the implementation of energy efficiency and demand side management measures. Recent media reports have also indicated that some construction companies (including Group Five and Aveng) are moving quite discernibly into renewable energy (RE)

developments in the hope that they can secure a share of the renewables allocation under the Integrated Resource Plan (IRP) for electricity. In this regard, Group Five has set up a specific new unit which deals with RE projects and Aveng has recently appointed an environment manager for the Group. Aveng is particularly positioning itself around wind and solar energy for bids that will emerge in this sector in the near future. Murray & Roberts have also adopted a new environmentfriendly asphalt technology (Much Asphalt) that saves energy. “A few key trends currently pertain to the construction sector as set out by Group Five and as observed for other firms in the sector. These are taking place in terms of complex changes which are setting the scene for changes in construction practices, an increased focus on the environment and the introduction of greener practices and technologies. However, clarity is required from the South African authorities in terms of environmental priorities as these influence the type of interventions, investment and training in which construction firms need to engage,” reads the case study. v Camco Global Tel: 011 253 3400 E-mail: Website: TIPS Tel: 012 431 7900 Email: Website:

Sustainable growth

for a global group of customers For 85 years, Bayferrox iron oxides manufactured by Lanxess at its Krefeld-Uerdingen site in Germany have been adding colour to building projects around the world. Since production started back in 1926, over 12 million metric tonnes of these high-quality colour pigments have left the Lanxess plant on Germany’s River Rhine, which is the biggest plant of its kind in the world. This makes Lanxess one of the world’s largest manufacturers of these pigments, and mounting global demand will necessitate further capital expenditures at all production sites. The main beneficiaries of this are the construction industry and the surface coatings segment, which are among the biggest customers for these pigments. “For these industries, our pigments are absolutely indispensable because of their lightfastness,

weather stability, chemical resistance and environmental friendliness,” says Jörg Hellwig, head of the Inorganic Pigments business unit. “The product range now contains well over 100 different colour shades – and the number will continue to grow.” v Lanxess (Pty) Ltd Tel: 011 457 4019 Fax: 011 457 4008 Email: Internet:


high-spec products feature

Facility managers:

sourcing, specifying & designing for high-traffic zones Facility managers can be seen as the people who connect the clients, electricians, cleaning companies and development managers to the design professionals, specifiers and architects. Sourcing the right products for high-traffic zones and ensuring that the right knowledge is received and transferred isn’t without its difficulties. Walls & Roofs takes a look at what real challenges and opportunities face the facility managers, specifiers and development managers behind some of South Africa’s biggest projects.

Durability, aesthetics and cleaning Kulani Lebese, Head of Facilities Management at Growthpoint Properties (the largest JSE-listed property company in South Africa), says that facility managers are generally concerned with three things when it comes to choosing products that work for them as well as their tenants: durability, aesthetics and cleanerfriendly products. In order to ensure that tiles, cladding, lights and other services don’t need continuous maintenance, it is also essential that facility managers, architects, specifiers and cleaning companies communicate throughout the building or refurbishing process, says Lebese. “Some of the most common product failures occur, for example, when new products are specified and the cleaning company isn’t informed about the correct cleaning methods. Another example is when the correct product is specified but it is installed incorrectly. When we choose product, we involve people from all areas of the project to analyse our options and determine what works and what doesn’t,” says Lebese.


Universal design: how facility managers can get it right The principle of universal design for high-traffic zones and corporate offices is based on the simple idea of “making it easy for your employees or customers to get what they need”. Although the concept of universal design is sometimes confused with principles of designing for the disabled, universal design means giving the building owners a competitive edge for their tenants and their tenants’ visitors. DeAnna Radaj, a design consultant from American company Bante Design, says that facility managers have a unique place in implementing universal design. “By implementing its seven principles, it makes the job of facility managers and many of their duties easier. If the design scheme is done properly in the first place, the space’s occupants and any visitors can easily get around,” says Radaj ( Radaj was referring to the seven principles of universal design which are: 1. Equitable Use; 2. Flexibility in Use; 3. Simple and intuitive use; 4. Perceptible information; 5. Tolerance for error; 6. Low physical effort; and 7. Size and space for approach and use. “Implementing these changes can help reduce vacancies in properties as occupants may have to find other, more accessible, spaces as the need arises. It also adds value to the property itself, making it more marketable in a tough economy, as you are able to market property to a wider, diverse population group,” says Radaj. Juan Herrero, a development manager at Growthpoint Properties, says that universal design basically boils down to enabling building tenants to maximise their spaces. “Some companies may be considering downsizing and the changes in their spaces need to be taken into account during the planning phase. A lot of companies are also opting for open-plan offices and facility managers have a great role to play along with interior designers and space planners to ensure that the services in the building work with the new office design,” says Herrero. Herrero says that while space planners determine the office layout, development and facility managers need to analyse what will be needed to make sure all the employees have electricity outlets and airconditioning in the right spaces. “If you are changing a corporate office from a cellular layout to an open-plan layout, you are basically knocking down a lot of walls – someone who was sitting at a desk next to a wall with a plug may suddenly find himself in the middle of the room, 15 m away from the nearest electricity point. Instead of having leads and cables across the floor, you can plan for the electrical supply cables to go through the ceiling cable trays – if your ceilings allow this type of service outlay – or you can install raised floors with


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Above: Getting everyone involved in the planning process can save a property development company a lot of money.

cable trunking running underneath,” says Herrero. “Similar problems can also arise with airconditioning when moving from a cellular layout to open-plan. When you take down walls that used to separate people in an office, you may be creating hot and cold spots and you need to balance the difference in temperature,” says Herrero. “Getting everyone involved in the planning process can save a property development company a lot of money,” explains Lebese. “Facility managers deal with the real problems of maintaining buildings, so they have in-depth knowledge of which products have a shorter or longer lifespan or high maintenance. Getting facility managers involved from the get-go is a sure way to get the most value out of your development or refurbishiment of buildings,” says Lebese.

What is universal design? “Universal Design is the design of products and environments to be usable by all people, to the greatest extent possible, without the need for adaptation or specialised design.” – Ron Mace, one of the original Universal Design Movement leaders. According to, it is the process of embedding choice for all people in the things we design. • Choice involves flexibility, and multiple alternative means of use and/or interface. • People include the full range of people regardless of age, ability, sex, economic status, etc. • Things include spaces, products, information systems and any other things that humans manipulate or create.


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Specifying the right products “Architects generally come up with the idea and specify products, then our development managers and facility managers start looking at the spec sheets. For example, when going through the specifications, among others questions asked is, Will the cleaning company need specialised equipment to clean the walls or floor tiles or is it an environmental friendly product?” asks Lebese. “During product specification, we use the term ‘value engineering’ a lot. For us, this means looking at the value of a product and determining whether it can be compared to another, more cost-effective, product. We often find there are products available that are better in quality and more reasonable in cost.” Lebese also warns against specifying new or unfamiliar products. “We’ve had problems with manufactures which have stopped producing a specific product that was introduced into the market, making it difficult to source the correct product if it needs to be replaced,” says Lebese. When it comes to aesthetics, Lebese explains that while interesting colours may be a great idea for home renovations, this isn’t always the case when creating workable environments for corporate offices. “New corporate offices and refurbishments want to be cuttingedge, so it’s important to keep the look modern and trendy while ensuring the products last a long time. This is done not only to create a workable environment for the tenants, but also to “futureproof” the building so that one doesn’t have to refurbish the property every three years,” says Lebese.

Who’s sourcing the sustainable products? Andrew C. Hillman, former MD of Bespoke Sourcing Solutions and former MD of renewable energy company Bioenergy Africa, says that green procurement is an approach to procurement in which environmental impacts affect important purchasing decisions, not only price and quality. “Sustainable Procurement involves organisations practising procurement with a view to maximising net benefits for themselves and the wider world. Extrinsic cost considerations must be incorporated into decisions alongside the conventional procurement criteria of price and quality and are typically divided into the following groups: environmental, economic, and social, also known as the ‘triple baseline’, says Hillman. One can argue that green product specification and green cleaning are among the “lowest-hanging fruit” for facility managers, but Lebese explains that different models need to be taken into consideration to make sure owners will see a return on their investments. “We have a duty to give clients options when it comes to energy-efficient products and products with a lower carbon footprint, but we look at various models so that tenants can see savings in their utility bills,” says Lebese. Jennifer Steyn, Absa Sustainability Program Manager, says there are various things that a green procurement policy should include. “There are statute-driven objectives that we must meet, and then there are objectives that can only be reached by being true to our leadership principles. South African environmental and other issues are very different from the ones faced by Europe and the USA. Our approach, therefore, needs to take this into account so that we may succeed in taking care of our environment and our people,” says Steyn.


Above: Herrero adds that specifying energy-efficient lights for shopping centres or corporate offices may reduce energy bills.

Saving energy versus working in the dark? Herrero adds that specifying energy-efficient lights for shopping centres or corporate offices may reduce energy bills, but facility managers are also tasked with ensuring adequate lighting levels throughout the building – regardless of whether the tenants are saving money or not. “Office environments have a very high level of occupancy during office hours and certain lux levels are needed for corridors, boardrooms, bathrooms and desk areas. When specifying energyefficient lights, one needs to make sure that the necessary light levels are achieved throughout the building,” says Herrero. Luke Osburn, former researcher at the CSIR Built Environment unit, says that fluorescent tubes should always be used where possible as they use roughly a quarter of the power that incandescent bulbs require to produce the same amount of light. “Because the fluorescent tubes are more energy-efficient than the incandescent bulbs, they also produce significantly less heat which means that a smaller HVAC system is required and less energy is required from the HVAC systems to maintain a comfortable temperature and working environment,” says Osburn. Various fluorescent tubes are available and care should be taken that the most appropriate fluorescent tubes are installed for the given application. High performance T8s (Super T8) are appropriate for most office environments and are able to produce up to 100 lumens per watt. T5s offer similar efficiency performance when compared to T8s but, because they are smaller, they offer better optical control. T5s are a more appropriate choice if they are to operate in a warm or enclosed space as they offer a higher level of performance than T8s at higher temperatures. T5s can also operate more efficiently; however, they are significantly more expensive than T8s.

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When specifying for schools, universities, hospitals, and government and commercial buildings, one must ensure these components are able to deliver the intended benefits over the long term. Westerkamp says that, besides meeting the necessary building codes and standards, door hardware for high-traffic zones also need the following key features: an aesthetically pleasing look; durability consistent with the level and severity of use; robust designs that require minimal maintenance; support for building safety and security; and ease of use.


“Care should be taken to ensure that an interior space is not lit beyond what is required, so that only as much light as is required is produced and therefore no light is wasted. The Green Star SA rating tool recommends that lighting levels within office spaces are kept below 400 lux, while SANS 204 recommends a lighting level of 300 lux for low-risk commercial space. Operating in the range between 300-400 lux will provide sufficient lighting for conventional office tasks while not wasting energy,” says Osburn.

Specifying doors and locks for security “Managers expect long performance life from door hardware, even though some components in high-traffic areas are subject to probably the most repetitious cycling of any components in buildings. Specifiers demand that manufacturers design durability into each application following rigid architectural standards that should be included in specifications to ensure a proper balance between function and cost,” says Thomas A. Westerkamp, author of Maintenance Manager’s Standard Manual. “Use can vary from a few cycles a day for hotel and dorm rooms to many thousands for airport entrances, large office buildings and department stores. The operating grade – grade 1 being the most robust – tells a specifier the level of service to expect. The grade must be appropriate for the operating cycles per day and yearly average for the application. For example, a large department store entrance can experience 1,5 million cycles per year. Less robust grades might cost less, but they will not be the lowest-cost solution in the long run and certainly will result in more maintenance time and user inconvenience,” says Westerkamp. In an article entitled Door Hardware: Specifying For Security, Westerkamp writes that facilities continue to shore up their security measures in order to provide greater protection for both occupants and operations. “As central components these efforts, door locks, handles, hinges and operators are under increasing pressure to perform reliably in the most demanding conditions,” says Westerkamp.

• Mortise locks: These locks are popular for high-traffic applications, such as entrance doors, where security is a major concern. The components of the lock are typically housed in an enclosed, wrought-iron cast that fits in a routed opening in the edge of the door. A newer variation of the mortise lock is the three-point mortise lock that has two additional hook bolts – one above and below connected by a bar to the centre case – that provide more rigid locking and added security. • Roses (also known as rosettes): These locks can be installed on both cylindrical and mortise lock handles on the faces of doors and covering the face holes. If added security is needed, managers can specify heavy-duty metal escutcheons.

Handles In healthcare and educational buildings, facility managers can specify silver-based, anti-microbial agents in the hardware finish coating (this coating guards against algae, mildew and bacteria, and it can remain active for the life of the hardware).

Hinges Installation method, location and play an important role in security, and facility managers must consider height, weight, thickness and trim dimension when specifying these products. “The standard hinge location is 5 inches (12,7 cm) from the top door jamb rabbet to the top of the hinge barrel, and 10 inches (25,4 cm) from the bottom edge of the bottom hinge barrel to the finished floor surface. Additional hinges are evenly spaced between the two. One hinge every 30 inches (76,2 cm) is standard. Doors up to 60 inches (152,4 cm) high would require two hinges, those 60 to 90 inches (228,6 cm) high require three hinges, and those 90 to 120 inches (304,8 cm) high require four hinges,” writes Westerkamp. “A new generation of improved electric-powered hinges link power from the in-house distribution system through the hinge to electrified door hardware. Power remains available regardless of door position, and the position is monitored from remote locations.These locks provide important security benefits, as well as essential data for creating an audit trail, including name, identification number, date and time, of all people who enter and leave a building. Selectable activation options include keypad, proximity sensor and radio frequency identification,” continues Westerkamp. v Walls & Roofs would like to give thanks and acknowledgement to Thomas A. Westerkamp, DeAnna Radaj, Kulani Lebese, Juan Herrero, Luke Osburn, Andrew C. Hillman, Jennifer Steyn and Jaclyn Lovell for information contained in this article.


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New Design in

7-8 July 2011

Hospitality Expo

Thebe Exhibitions & Projects Group has announced the launch of Design in Hospitality, the first conference of its kind to be held in South Africa, taking place in The Forum at Turbine Hall, Newtown/Johannesburg, from 7-8 July 2011.


ncorporating a high-level conference and a designled exhibition, Design in Hospitality (DiH) focuses exclusively on the hotel and hospitality industry, and is set to become the must-attend event for the hospitality and design world, while giving designers and other decision makers the opportunity to grow their understanding of industry trends and to connect with their peers. “From check-in to sleeping to bathing to eating, modern hospitality concepts need to excite, seduce and sell, and do so by balancing aesthetics with the financial,” says Cairey Slater, general manager for the project. “These are challenging, yet exciting times for the hospitality design industry as hotels are undergoing a transformation which will see their range of offerings go far beyond the basic services of accommodation and food.” Sustainability will be integrated throughout all aspects of the event, joined by ethonomics, one of the most impactful trends emerging on the hotel design scene. Technology and connectivity will also feature strongly.

Back by popular demand, Conversations on Architecture: Architects for change will be presented by Thebe Exhibitions on 18 March 2011 at the Durban International Conference Centre Hailed as an annual networking and insight highlight, COA 2011 boasts an extended programme hosted by Hugh Fraser and featuring a stellar line-up of guest speakers including Mick Pearce, Claire Janisch, Sean Mahoney, Peter Stutchbury, George Elphick and Joy Brasler, which means that delegates can expect to be engaged, educated and inspired as today’s leading minds take to the floor and share opinions and insights in an open-discussion format.

Divided into two sessions, the topics of discussion are: Sustainability and Environmental Responsibility: While the greening movement gains momentum, our experts explore whether the concept has become passé as ever-evolving new technology, practices and principles are implemented. Or


Held during the exhibition, the two-day DiH Conference, themed Designing the ultimate away experience, forms the core of the event, providing delegates with essential advice and updates from this sector. A line-up of international industry design experts and local leading lights will share their insights on trends in their field and discuss their vision in the context of the hospitality world. Conference sessions on Day 1 will focus on hotel development and interior design; while those on Day 2 will concentrate on designing facilities and services, as well as food design. Cairey points out that choosing The Forum at the Turbine Hall as the venue for the conference is in sync with the conference’s experience-rich ethos. “This landmark building, which started its life as a power station in the 1920s, has been transformed into a magnificent space with excellent facilities in the heart of the arts and culture precinct, Newtown.” For more information contact Samantha van den Berg, events and special projects, on

are we simply entering into a consistently sustainable ‘built lifecycle’ where novelty is no longer part of the picture? This will provide a platform for interesting debate, begging the questions: Where have we been? What have we learnt? Where to next? Biomimicry: Where nature and architectural innovation meet. Considered a relatively new discipline that has evolved as an architectural practice on the rise, COA will delve into the significant strides being made through biomimicry in architecture. As this practice gains momentum, our experts explore whether we’re using nature’s extraordinary examples to our best advantage or are we simply skimming the surface? Conversations with our keynote speakers will provide stunning examples of successful biomimicry in practice, with a look at the process from inspiration to completion. To book, visit or contact Nicola on e-mail: nicolad@ This conference is in the process of being assessed and validated by the South African Institute of Architects for between 0.5 - 1 CPD credits.

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high-spec products ADVERTORIAL


light weight tile adhesive 1




Multi construction chemicals (MCC), a company which has been in the industry for over 25 years, has developed an All-In-One tile adhesive range that will revolutionise the way tiling is done in the industry. The new adhesive sprouts from MCC’s highly successful light weight adhesives and incorporates MCC’s vision in developing technology driven adhesives for the tiling market.


CC, which is well known for supplying specialised products suited to local markets, has developed the All-In-One range to give contractors a solution that enables the adhesive to not only stick to tiles, but also grout at the same time. Available in selected colours only.

Why All-In-One light weight tile adhesive? • Labour saving: The new product line incorporates three main benefits because the All-In-One is a grout, adhesive and waterproof product. This provides a substantial cost saving to labour, as tiling can be completed in one day rather than the industry norm being two to three days. • Waterproof: Waterproofing products such as torch-on and flurry sealed systems are often very expensive and time consuming. Such systems are not necessary as All-In-One is waterproof and can be used in interior and exterior conditions such as bathrooms, kitchens, patio’s etc. • 100% Active: Tile adhesives are commonly packaged in 20Kg


bags, where over 60% of the product consists of fillers (such as sand). MCC’s All-In-One light weight adhesive provides 100% active material in their 15Kg packaging. MCC All-In-One will cover approximately 3.5m² of adhesive and grout. • Transport savings: The cost of transport becomes a challenge when transporting construction products to and from sites. Approximately 25% can be saved on transportation costs by using MCC light weight tile adhesive range, due to the fact that more bags can be transported per load and no transporting of grout is necessary.

Contractors opinion Harry Smit, project manager at Dykor tile centre, recently used the new All-In-One tile adhesive and grout on a project.“ We used MCC All-In-One 500 light weight and we were extremely pleased with the result. The All-In-One is an exceptional product, as not only is it more cost effective than the traditional adhesives but I didn’t have to use a torch on system either, which allowed me to concentrate on other areas of the site,” said Smit.

high-spec products ADVERTORIAL

Other products within MCC’s range include concrete admixtures, curing compounds, various epoxy’s joint sealants, floor hardeners, concrete grouting and many more.



The new technology that has been incorporated into this new range of light weight tile adhesive offers excellent workability and has a 3-5 year manufacturers guarantee when instructions are followed.

All-In-One tile range • All-In-One 500 Light Weight: A general based tile adhesive suitable for fixing standard ceramics tiles. • All-In-One 510 Light Weight: Provides a professional finish that is technically superior to 500 light weight. It is recommended for challenging jobs due to its improved bond strength. • All-In-One 530 Light Weight: A high-strength tile adhesive for

End product

fixing not only standard ceramics tiles but also porcelain and granite tiles, giving peace of mind. Other products within MCC’s range include concrete admixtures, curing compounds, various epoxy’s joint sealants, floor hardeners, concrete grouting and many more. MCC has branches in Gauteng, Polokwane, Rustenburg and Durban. v Multi Construction Chemicals Tel: 011 864 4654 Fax: 011 864 4406 E-mail: Website:


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Sika strengthens Sanitation Project in Richards Bay area Sika’s robust concrete admixtures have been used to strengthen the concrete structures of many large and illustrious buildings so it is no wonder that their reputation precedes them, to the extent that nothing else would do for the construction of thousands of rural VIP precast toilets for the City of uMhlathuze. The MIG-funded project (entitled: Rural Sanitation Phase 2: Mkhwanazi South/ Dube, uMhlathuze Municipality), appointed contractor Rocla, and instructed the manufacture of 5 750 VIP toilets. These custom-built toilets were for distribution throughout the Mkhwanazi South/Dube Traditional areas within the City of uMhlathuze’s area of jurisdiction (140 square kilometres), for the improvement of hygiene services in the local community as well as for environmental purposes. Sika’s admixtures, Viscocrete-3088 (2 000 litres) and Viscocrete20HE (5 000 litres) were supplied to the project for use in the manufacture of precast slabs for the toilets. Viscocrete-20HE, a high-performance, third-generation superplasticiser which is especially suitable for producing concrete mixes which require high early-strength development, powerful water reduction and excellent flow characteristics, was used to construct an early stem for the precast slabs. Sika Viscocrete-3088, a high-range, water-reducing concrete

admixture, was used to increase the workability time. Unskilled local labourers were trained on site by Rocla to construct a high early-strength of precast to accelerate the production time. This ensured the slabs would be set by the following day, in readiness for stripping for the next part of production of the toilets. Sika MonoTop-610 was used for coating the steel reinforcement bars inside the slabs. This cementitious, polymer-modified, one-component, bonding slurry and anti-corrosion reinforcement primer was applied to the steel bars as corrosion protection, as it offers excellent adhesion to concrete and steel, and provides good resistance to water and chloride penetration. Thanks to Sika, an excellent quality was achieved in the production of these new sanitary systems and a special handover of the first toilet was conducted by the City of uMhlathuze. The residents of the Mkhwanazi South/Dube Traditional areas were overjoyed at the opening ceremony of the toilet distribution project heralding the installation of the 5 750 concrete toilets, which will bring a new level of sanitation to their lives, uplifting their community’s hygiene and environmental standards forever.v Sika South Africa Tel: 031 792 6500 Email: Website:

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Retaining walls at interchanges


raffic interchanges are structures that use grade separation with ramps to facilitate rapid flow of traffic in various directions without any traffic stream directly crossing another. Interchanges become unavoidable when regular traffic increases; they cost a fortune and often have to be squeezed into a tight space. The result is that creative engineering design has to be employed, demanding cost-effective retaining structures that can be built rapidly while offering a safe and long-lasting solution.

Mechanically Stabilised Earth (MSE), an ancient technique of using artificially reinforced earth to build stable retaining walls, is one of the prominent methods employed during construction of such interchanges. Today, this method is well understood, tested and employed on numerous sites around the world. It is relatively easy to adapt the height and inclination of such retaining walls, depending on what type of system is being used. Versatile Terraforce blocks are very popular for such applications. They offer the advantage of being hollow units that can be filled with crushed stone or concrete if required, while no connectors between blocks or to anchor the reinforcing material are required, which has a pull-out resistance of above industry standard. Two interchanges using the Terraforce system were recently completed in Dubai. The first, the Mirdif interchange, is situated at the intersection of Al Khawaneej and Algeria roads in the residential area of Mirdif in Dubai and was designed and constructed to replace the existing one which could not accommodate increasing traffic volumes, generated by the devel-

opment of surrounding areas. The limited space available necessitated steep side slopes which were retained with Terraforce L16 (split-face) composite retaining walls and vertical Freyssinet panel retaining walls, thus minimising impact on surrounding land and facilities. The Terraforce blocks were used to support both sides of the four ramps, as well as the approaches to the crossroads. A total of 9 300 m² of Terraforce walling was installed, reinforced with Fortrac 35/20-20T geogrids with heights of between 0,5 m and 4 m. Construction of this ZAR500-million project commenced in 2007 and was completed in Dec 2009. The second interchange, Jebel Ali, was completed shortly thereafter. v Terraforce Phone: 021 465 1907 Fax: 021 465 4047 Website:


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Medupi is currently the largest construction project in Southern Africa, covering some 883 hectares and comprising 6 units rated at 4 788 MW installed capacity. A local Chryso Group Company is supplying waterproofing, flooring and sealants, as well as general construction products for the building of the coal-fired power plant.


chemicals used at Medupi Power Station


he Medupi coal-fired power station in the Limpopo province is a significant part of Eskom’s expansion program. Construction of Medupi started in November 2008 and it is currently the largest construction project in Southern Africa, covering some 883 hectares and comprising 6 units rated at 4 788 MW installed capacity. The boiler and turbine contracts for Medupi were the largest yet signed by Eskom in its 86-year history.

Construction chemicals at Medupi An extensive range of a.b.e. Construction Chemicals products are being used in the construction of Eskom’s massive new Medupi power station at Lephalale. a.b.e. – a Chryso Group Company – is supplying waterproofing, flooring and sealants, as well as general construction products for the building of the coal-fired power plant. Some of the waterproofing products used at the construction site include the following: • super laycryl professional liquid waterproofing compound • super laykold rubberised bitumen emulsion • ecofelt fibre material


• duraslurry cementitious slurry • duraflex flexible waterproofing slurry Flooring and sealant products being supplied by a.b.e. include aberep cement floor repair mortar, DC 888 low-modulus silicone joint sealant, durasheet backup material, abecote epoxy tar coating, and durakol G LM polysulphide elastomeric joint sealer. Among the a.b.e. general construction products now used at Medupi are durajoint rubber waterstops, abecote SF356 epoxy tar coating and binder, epidermix lightweight epoxy mortar, and plastergrip adhesive for the enhancement of cement screed bonding. Medupi, which means “rain that soaks parched lands, giving economic relief”, is scheduled to commission power station units at nine-monthly intervals, in line with international practice. The first unit is scheduled to be commissioned in 2012, with the last unit scheduled for commissioning by 2015. v a.b.e. Construction Chemicals Tel: 011 306 9000 E-mail: Website:

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GLASS & ALUMINIUM PERFORMANCE feature Picture: The enclosure is filled with daylight due to the glass domes. Panes were fritted to avoid unnecessary heat gain. Source:

Trends and innovations in


Glass & Aluminium High-performance glass and aluminium is an ever-changing niche in the professional design industry. At the beginning of the New Year, Walls & Roofs generally likes to look at the up-andcoming trends, recent high-profile projects and what professionals in the industry can look forward to. In this edition, we take a look at third-generation PV in structural glass, innovations in safety glass and some amazing international and local projects. The energy space and third wave in Photovoltaics “Dangers of the remarkably fast-increasing energy demand of humankind are regularly highlighted in different media. One part of the threat is the exhaustion of non-renewable sources of energy; another part lies in the danger of carbon-dioxide emissions. Therefore it is in everyone’s interest to minimise the energy consumption of buildings. Current methods include optimising thermal insulation of buildings and passive architectural use of solar energy, through appropriate orientation of buildings for example,” said Kevin Moens, marketing manager from Solutia Europe. Moens has over 8 years of technical and application expertise for architectural glazing as well as expertise in BIPV (building integrated photovoltaics) and thin-film PV encapsulation. Moens was speaking at Glass Africa Expo, which was held in Johannesburg in September 2010. In the past, PVs were seen as something that could be used to generate electricity, but new technologies and advances in the industry have lead a number of researchers, PV manufacturers and design professionals to start to see PVs as a by-product of a multifunctional building. Instead of judging PVs purely on their ability to product power, one would also be able to judge the


material by looking at other criteria, such as design and structural integration flexibility. “There’s a growing interest in building integration of PV technologies from both PV suppliers and building designers alike. BIPV only accounts for 3,7% of PV installation up to 2013,” says Moens. Building Applied Photovoltaics (BAPV) refers to solar modules added to buildings after the construction phase. BAPV is generally considered a retrofit project. Building Integrated Photovoltaics (BIPV) refers to integrating solar modules into the envelope and it has a dual role of being a building material and power generation system. “Some of the key challenges concerning BIPV in the building industry include the lack of standardisation in BIPV products, integration expertise, regulation development and understanding as well as a need for new materials,” says Moens. Organic Photovoltaics (OPVs) and dye-sensitised solar cells (DSSCs) are collectively referred to as third-generation PV technologies. According to, as third-gen PV technology advances in terms of performance and other factors, architecturally attractive uses of PVs in the building fabric will become more commonplace.

Above & below: The Incheon Airport in Seoul, South Korea, demonstrates the trend for curved, structural glass. Source:

BIPV (Building Integrated Photovoltaics) refers to photovoltaic systems integrated with an object’s building phase. It means that they are built/constructed along with an object. They are also planned together with the object. Yet, they could be built later on. Specific task cooperation of many different experts, such as architects, civil engineers and PV system designers, is necessary. According to how and where such systems are built, whether into the facade or in the roof, the following BIPV systems are recognised: • FaVade or roof systems added after the building was built • FaVade-integrated photovoltaic systems built along with an object • Roof-integrated photovoltaic systems built along with an object • “Shadow-Voltaic” - PV systems also used as shadowing systems, built along with an object or added later Source:



Above: The Visionaire building in New York City features faVade-integrated photovoltaics at the mechanical bulkhead, with custom modules using blue polycrystalling cells. Source:

“Unlike bulky and rigid traditional, silicon-based solar cells, third-gen PVs can be made lightweight, flexible and translucent. They can be produced in different colours and patterned, resulting in additional smart design opportunities for the integration of the PV into the building shell,” Ingo B Hagemann, architect and BIPV consultant, told “The new design features of third-gen PV correspond well with current trends in architectural design, such as intensive use of colours, the use of (multimedia) screens and patterns for building façade designs. The technology also supports the rediscovery of the moulding of complex curving forms, which is a result and expression of contemporary architectural practice in which digital technologies are radically changing the way buildings are conceived, designed and produced. Printing, coating, vacuum processing and other simple, low-temperature and low-cost production processes are being developed to fabricate thirdgen PVs, which will make them less costly to manufacture,” said Hagemann (



The blast-resistant glass is lighter, thinner and tough enough to withstand earthquakes, explosions and hurricanes. Source:

Unlike current blast-resistant windows which are made of pure polymer layers, this new design is a plastic composite that has an interlayer of polymer reinforced with glass fibres – and it’s only a quarter-inch (0,6cm) thick. The team recently subjected their new glass pane to a small explosion. “The results were fantastic. While the discharge left the pane cracked, the front surface remained completely intact,” said Sanjeev Khanna, the project’s principal investigator and an associate professor of mechanical engineering at the University of Missouri. The design uses long glass fibres in the form of a woven cloth soaked in liquid plastic and bonded with adhesive. The glass fibres are typically 15 to 25 micrometres in diameter, about half the thickness of a typical human hair. The small size results in fewer defects and a decreased chance of cracking. Engineers expect the new design will be comparable in cost to current blast-proof glass panes, but lighter in weight. Khanna hopes this glass could become commercially available in three to four years.

The glass is a plastic composite that has an interlayer of polymer reinforced with glass fibres – and it’s only a quarter-inch (0,6cm) thick. Source:

New type of blast-resistant glass The US Department of Homeland Security’s Science and Technology Directorate has given a team of engineers from the University of Sydney in Australia and the University of Missouri the opportunity to create a new form of blast-resistant glass. “Whether in a hurricane, tornado, or bomb attack, a leading cause of injury and death is often fast-flying shards of glass. Explosions and high winds can cause windows in buildings to shatter – spewing jagged pieces of glass in every direction,” reads a statement by the department. “Installing blast-resistant glass in buildings that are potential targets for attack or in regions prone to severe weather can save lives. But current blast-resistant glass technology – the kind that protects the windows of key federal buildings, the President’s limo, and the Popemobile – is thicker than a 300-page novel – so thick it cannot be placed in a regular window frame. This makes it very difficult (and expensive) to replace standard glass windows in present structures,” says the department.


The transparent, rounded forms of the glass domes constrast with the angular faVades of the original 1914 Elephant House nearby. Source:

Elephant House – Copenhagen Zoo Foster + Partners replaced a 1914 Elephant House at Copenhagen Zoo, the largest cultural institution in Denmark, during 2002 – 2008. The new Elephant House seeks to restore the visual relationship between the zoo and the park and to provide the elephants with a stimulating environment, with easily accessible spaces from which to enjoy them.


The new Elephant House consists of two glass-covered enclosures, a large one for the main herd and a smaller one for the bulls. There are also separate outdoor areas for males and females (this division is naturally adhered to by elephants in the wild).

Project details

Client: Foundation Realdania for Copenhagen Zoo Consultants: Rambøll with Buro Happold, Davis Langdon LLP and Seah, Rambøll with Buro Happold, Stig L Andersson Architects

The Elephant House is covered with lightweight glass domes which are unequal in size. Source:

Research into the social patterns of elephants, together with a desire to bring a sense of light and openness to a building type traditionally characterised as closed, provided powerful starting points. The Elephant House is covered with lightweight, glazed domes and these spaces maintain a strong visual connection with the sky and changing patterns of daylights. There are broad public viewing terraces that run around the domes externally.

Get a representative to help write specifications “Specifiers’ lives can be made much easier should they decide to use the human resources available to them, i.e. the representatives from the different companies that can assist with writing the correct specification for a specific project,” says John “Butch” Grewar, AGI Glass project manager for KwaZulu- Natal and Swaziland. “A specifier should never hesitate to call a representative from a particular company to assist with the writing of the correct specification in order for tenders to be awarded on the basis of comparing apples with apples,” says Grewar. Grewar has represented the two major glass-specifying companies in South Africa for more than thirty years. “During this time I have noted that many specifications have been written and gone out to tender where the tendering shopfitters had no idea as to what was required by the specifier,” says Grewar before giving the following example. “A shopfitter, in recent years, enquired from me as to why 10mm Bronze annealed glass was specified for a toilet window on the first floor of an industrial property. I enquired from the specifier and was given this reply: ‘It is up to the shopfitter to install the correct glass’,” says Grewar. “This reply from the specifier and numerous other situations where apples haven’t been compared with apples made me realise that I can actually offer a service to the specifiers where the doubt of specifying a glass product can be greatly reduced,” says Grewar. Grewar is the driving force behind AGI’s presentation which teaches professionals in the building industry about glass types and applications as well as their break patterns so that they can specify appropriate glass types for the structures they are designing. The hour-long presentation Grewar has compiled guides the specifier in the direction of establishing what requirements the building would need in terms of solar energy control, thermal insulation, aesthetics, acoustics and safety and security. “The most important person in the beginning of the project, together with the specifier, is the mechanical engineer. The mechanical engineer’s role is highlighted in the presentation, as his/her requirements in terms of shade coefficients and u-values are critical to the correct performance glass selection,” says Grewar. Part Two of the presentation is a “smashbox” practical demonstration where different glass types are displayed and then smashed by members of the audience. The performance glass specified can have beneficial properties such as acoustic control, security and glare control, amongst others, included in the make-up of the glass, should the specifiers be aware of what options are available to them, as per the practical demonstration.

Walls & Roofs would like to give thanks and acknowledgement to John “Butch” Grewar and Kevin Moens for the information they contributed to this article. v



Bespoke solutions for


performance buildings CGA was established in 1993 and specialises in the design and erection of bespoke glass and aluminium solutions in the construction and infrastructural developmental arenas.


t is one of the leading manufacturers and installers of purpose-made architectural aluminium sections and glass façades, shop fronts, windows and doors, as well as aluminium composite panel cladding for the commercial, retail and top-end residential markets.

Strong national and international base CGA has developed a strong presence on a national basis within South Africa from the Northern Province to the South Coast and KwaZulu-Natal. CGA has also completed various projects in neighbouring countries such as Mozambique, Botswana and Swaziland, which endorses the fact that it has the capacity to

successfully complete both national and international orders for competitive glass and aluminium construction solutions. The Greenstone Shopping Centre, Sun City Hotel Revamp, The Fairlands Wesbank and FNB Home Loans Development, Tuks Residential Development, the upmarket Sandhurst Towers, Holiday Inn Express, Sunnypark and a number of new hotels and lodges, to mention but a few, are all projects with which CGA is proud to be associated.

FNB Block G One of the major projects completed last year was the supply and installation of a variety of glass solutions at the new FNB (Block G Parkade and Office) Development in the Johannesburg city centre. Working in conjunction with ICM Architectural Studio, SIP Project Managers and BWR Quantity Surveyors, CGA supplied and installed the latest products for the bank’s project. These included the 3 521 m² Technal MX curtain wall which provides superior load distribution and less deflection. One of the reasons this system was specified was that its strength enables it


to hold large, heavy glazing units. The 294 m² glass façade screen, which was assembled on site, was also specified for the project. The project of the FNB offices in Johannesburg began in May 2009 and CGA’s involvement, which also included side-hung windows and single and double doors, lasted 16 months to completion. Martin Volker, group marketing manager of AG Industries, says that double-glazed units were also chosen in order to optimise the comfort of the employees. “AGI supplied lnsul-Therm Eclipse Advantage Grey doubleglazed units to achieve maximum thermal efficiency and achieve energy savings,” said Volker, before adding that GlassKote was also used as external cladding and 12 mm Cool-lite toughened safety glass was ‘spider-fitted’ to the glass curtain wall on the east façade. As part of its strategy for the future, CGA elected to be elevated into the listed company environment and has been a wholly owned subsidiary of Accentuate Limited (then SAFIC Holdings Ltd) since November 2007. Accentuate is a company aligned with the supply sector of the construction industry, and is the owner of, amongst others, the well-known FloorworX Africa brand. The move was designed to strengthen CGA’s position in the industry by aligning with and becoming part of a larger group operating in the same broader construction/infrastructure supply area. This acquisition has enabled Accentuate to provide their customers with more niche products and proves that CGA is one of the leading manufacturers and installers for the commercial, retail and top-end residential markets. Strategically, Accentuate has invested in CGA with the aim of leveraging off existing relationships with professionals and


contractors, while at the same time transforming the product and service offerings within the glass and aluminium industry. This segment of the market provides opportunity to combine function and styling while at the same time addressing many of the concerns around energy efficiency and green design. CGA is an active member of AAAMSA (Association of Architectural Aluminium Manufacturers of South Africa) and SAGGA (South African Glass & Glazing Association), and has access to the AAAMSA testing facilities; test results can be supplied on request. CGA is also a Smart Glass Accredited supplier and installer. v CGA Tel: 012 666 8000 Fax: 012 666 8007 e-mail:



New owners

for roller-style shutters Trellidor, best known for their trellis-style security gates, have purchased Rollerstyle, a manufacturing concern producing aluminium roller shutters. “We are very excited about adding this quality range to our portfolio as we believe it provides another dimension to our already comprehensive selection of security systems for both domestic and commercial settings,” said Trellicor Group CEO Terry Dennison.


rellidor Rollerstyle shutters are now produced at Trellidor’s Durban factory to the same high standards that customers have come to expect from the company. Said Dennison, “We’re making sure that existing and new Rollerstyle customers receive the same level of dedicated service and quality product for which Trellidor is renowned.”

Trellidor Rollerstyle shutters are inconspicuous and discreet. When open they provide uninterrupted views; when closed, some design such as the vented option shown here, allow in controlled light and fresh air.

Unlike steel shutters, aluminium versions are light in weight and easy to operate. They can be used as room dividers, to close off safe rooms or safe areas and to act as both front door and security barrier for retail outlets.


Aluminium shutters are an attractive way of securing permanent and holiday homes, commercial premises, corporate office buildings, medical dispensaries, retail outlets, canteens and bar counters. Like all Trellidor security barriers they are custom manufactured to fit doorways, windows, counters and a wide range of opening styles. Unlike steel shutters, aluminium versions are light in weight and easy to operate. They can be used as room dividers, to close off safe rooms or safe areas and to act as both front door and security barrier for retail outlets. They can either be incorporated into the design of a new building, where they roll up into a concealed box, or retro-fitted to existing buildings, in which case the box containing the motor is externally mounted. Trellidor offers several curtain design options, tailored to suit the requirements from complete privacy to security with a view. When closed, the shutters reduce noise and assist with internal temperature control, blocking out the worst of the heat from summer sun. There is a choice of manual or automated operation, including remote control for ultimate convenience. v Trellidor Tel: 031 582 7460 E-mail: Website:





INTERIOR SPACES Subdivision made easy One of the most sought-after and successful items in the Aluglass sales programme is the Variflex mobile acoustic partition system operable walls which permits flexible room layouts for meeting venues, conference centres, boardrooms, hotels, training centres, schools, universities, community and church halls, and many other applications. The Variflex concept can incorporate acoustic doors for practicality and versatility. The Variflex system allows the room to be subdivided so that two meetings can be held adjacent to each other in complete privacy, with the walls standing firm once locked into place. When the full size of the room is required, the individual elements are moved on an overhead track and positioned neatly to one side of the room, or into a cupboard or niche. For large conferences the full use of the room is then available. This is enhanced because no floor track is required, the system operating solely on an overhead track. Aluglass offers a comprehensive design, manufacture and installation service, and has experts that can assist architects, designers and end users at the feasibility stage. A wide variety of finishes is available to meet any design requirement.

Limited noise transmission Although external noise can be limited by the selection of appropriate wall and ceiling construction, this can also be limited by the use of acoustic doors and mobile partitions. Included in the Aluglass range is Varikust VK63, which has between 30dB and 35dB sound-insulation rating, and is specifically developed where the acoustical requirements are not so high, which means that it can be used for the hotel industry as entrance doors to the individual rooms, and similar applications. Also in the Varikust acoustic doors range is the VK105 option, which provides sound insulation ratings up to 52dB, which is suitable for TV studios, rehearsal rooms, lecture rooms, auditoriums and conference rooms.

The fabulous Aluglass Glassflex range The popular Aluglass Glassflex range of acoustic glazed architectural products provides all the essential requirements of any mobile glass partition system, in providing an unobstructed entrance when open, but remaining secure and equally attractive when closed.


In addition, the system can be provided to match any corporate colours or store dĂŠcor, which means that it is ideal for shopfronts, cinema foyers and restaurants, but also for private home patios. Glassflex is available in five versions: GF40 patio enclosures for the domestic market; the GF52 PN (internal) for standard shopfront applications, with positive/negative extrusions and an element thickness of 52 mm; GF52 PN (external), which is ideal for patios, verandahs, solariums, and similar applications; GF52 frameless for the exclusive market; and GF 120, with elements that are 120 mm thick, used for very high glass partitions such as in restaurants and where the acoustic factor is important.

Stack and fold system The GF40 stack and fold system, which has been designed specifically for the domestic market, is custom made to suit any opening size with a maximum height of 3,3 metres and five leaves of 600 mm width for a ground floor application. Finishes from natural anodised to powder-coated are available, manufactured to suit the individual application.

Top-hung system Glassflex GF52 partitions consist of individual elements travelling along a ceiling track and joining in tongue-and-groove style to form a solid glazed element wall. These individual elements are easy to move, enabling the shopfronts to be opened and closed without any difficulty. Locking bolts are concealed in each element, and the system requires no floor track – which is a fantastic advantage in use, and a major time and cost saver in installation. Having no floor track means that no dirt can collect, and a smooth uninterrupted floor finish is maintained. One or two suspension points are provided per element using rollers to match the track system and to determine the alternate parking positions: crosswise under track, U-parking into a niche or cupboard, or 45° parking.

frameless system The imported GF Frameless system for the exclusive market can be installed up to a height of three metres using 12mm toughened safety glass. This is available in tapered and square wedgelock clamping sections, and a variety of finishes including satin anodised, polished or brushed stainless steel, and polished or antique brass.


Four Variflex mobile acoustic partition walls set up to divide a large conference room into five smaller conference areas, where simultaneous meetings can take place.

A combination of fixed and mobile glass partitions allows offices to be set up next to each other, giving an openess through transparency and allowing enough privacy to work.

Acoustic system In addition, the GF120 acoustic partition/mobile curtain wall is the product to use for extremely high applications where sound insulation is important. Between 36dB and 45dB is achievable when using soundstop glass and/or double glazing (according to DIN52210). This product can be made available up to 9 m high. Aluglass started trading in 1974 and is now a familyrun business with independent agents and distributors throughout Southern Africa. The company keeps in touch with the latest international technology and the demands of the local market, and has gained an outstanding reputation for quality products and customer service over the years. v

Glassflex mobile partitions divides a large into two smaller areas, giving flexibilty in the use of the room.

Aluglass Bautech Tel: 011 451 8400 Fax: 011 609 8097 E-mail: Website:


© Capco


Roofing and Ceilings


The new King Shaka Airport in Kwazulu Natal boast wonderful array of roofing products.

South Africa has seen a myriad of successful and innovative roofing and ceilings projects being erected around the country. As in every industry, there are roofing projects that will go down in history books and serve as an example to others; and there are projects that fail and are quickly swept under the rug. In this edition of Walls & Roofs, we take a look at some of the challenges that architects, roofing contractors and specifiers experience. Find out what it takes to contribute to the success of a remarkable project, new products in the market as well as the standards and legislation you should know about.

Putting a lid on the Cape Town Stadium The following article is part of a book entitled ‘Cape Town Stadium – Between the Lines’, which tells the story of the process of building the stadium. Walls & Roofs would like to thank Henning Rasmuss from Point Architects and Urban Designers for the information provided for the article. Like the South-Easterly wind so unloved in Cape Town, the numbers of the roof project can blow your hair back. Speaking of wind: its force, modelled in a wind tunnel, can lift the inner roof edge by up to 1,8 metres over a period of fifteen minutes. Luckily, this is invisible to the watching human eye. At a final cost of just on R 500-million, the roof consumed about one eighth of the total project budget. It is the largest cable-supported glass structure in the world, and at 38 000 m² of surface area, weighs in above 4


700 tons. The 72 main cables are 98mm in diameter, and the inner tension ring combines eight of these in an assembly of 72 clamps weighing 1,4 tons each, produced in a medieval foundry in Bilbao, Spain. The cables are anchored to 72 inclined concrete columns topped by four fixed and 68 mobile bearings. These allow the roof to expand and contract by up to 2,4 metres in diameter due to heat expansion and contraction. The upper surface is assembled out of 8 960 individual pieces of 16mm thick laminated glass, most of which are coated in a white ceramic paint fused onto the surface in industrial kilns. The local architectural team checked in excess of 2 900 workshop drawings, and many more unseen ones were produced by the contractor and various subcontractors. The white painted compression ring, resting on the columns, is made of a special steel alloy, welded into two by one- metre box sections filled with Xenon gas to

Unlike traditional airport buildings, nothing about Barajas Airport is level and square.

The roof of the Cape Town stadium is designed to be a giant filter of atmospheric light.

prevent internal corrosion. These sections are on average eleven metres long and weigh 27 tons each, yet have a dimensional tolerance of 0,6 mm over their length at a design manufacturing temperature of 27 degrees. The main roof components were made in seven countries, including South Africa, and on four continents. At eight and a half metres of average depth, the roof is spatially the equivalent of a twisted three-storey building hovering in mid-air, 12 floors above the pitch level. There are only four bundled stormwater downpipes draining the roof’s vast area in a siphonic drainage system which feeds underground storage tanks used for the irrigation of Green Point Common. The tanks’ primary function is to act as relax chambers to slow down the pressure of the water from the 1000 litres per second that it culminates at, to a flow rate that will not damage the surrounding municipal stormwater channels.

Architectural effect and purpose Let us dwell for a moment on what the roof does for this building, from concept idea to detail spectator experience. The most magical experience, not available to visitors but seen by many of those involved in the project, is the eerie quiet of the glass roof on a warm summer night, when the roof glows like an unearthly spaceship under your feet as you walk on a 38 000 m² glistening disco floor fourteen floors above the city, watching the lights of the city reflected in the harbour of Cape Town. The roof of the Cape Town stadium was always going to be important. It has been consciously designed as a ‘fifth faVade’ to the building. It is highly visible from surrounding residential areas, nearby inner city office towers, as well as high-lying popular tourist sites such as Signal Hill and Table Mountain. Carefully illuminated at night with no garish effects, the subtly glowing stadium and its ‘roofscape’ make for an arresting and surprising change to the night-time image and silhouette of Table Bay and the City Bowl. For most visitors, the roof will appear as a benevolent hovering UFO-like disk, washing an even glow of warm and soft light across the steeply sloping seats. The ethereal veiling of the



steel structure behind the fibreglass membrane, stretched taut between the supporting cables, partly conceals a massive effort of fine architectural detailing. The entire structure and services zone between the glass top skin and the soft membrane veil have been detailed as architectural steelwork. It is a building in mid-air, with the rigour and quality control of a highly detailed building design. In its finished form, the roof is a vast hovering mechanistic presence. It is designed to be a giant filter of atmospheric light. The design intention is that the stadium would reflect, in muted form, the drama and very distinct colour washes of the particular light in Green Point, whether this be a stormy winter day, or a peachy-watercolour-seaside-sunset evening. On a misty day the drama of the structure is intensified: glimpses of the skeleton intermittently reveal themselves, to be swept from view the next instant. The effect can be delirious. On the inner edge of the roof construction, tucked under the clear glass edge, is the so-called ‘Ring of Fire’: the continuous band that holds the stadium lighting and focuses it down onto the confines of the field of play. It is the judicious placing of this ring almost above the field of play that minimises shadows and leaves the banks of spectator seating in semi-shadow.

Acoustic performance The approved Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) required the stadium to perform in a specific way to reduce sound emission through the stadium walls and roof. Scenarios for various events were electronically modelled to simulate the likely resulting acoustic impact, and performance criteria for the roof were developed. The combination of the upper glass covering, necessary for weight in terms of the high wind loading, and the lower diaphanous membrane veil proved to be a well-performing combination in these electronic tests. The membrane veil also allowed the architects to achieve the desired translucency and light transmission, while satisfying the exacting requirements of the EIA. The new stadium will perform vastly better than the old Green Point Stadium, in terms of limiting noise proliferation into the adjacent residential areas.



Track record The roof as a core design element and a core risk in the building process required the development of bespoke construction solutions, at both component level and at system level. Built by the American-German consortium ‘Birdair Pfeifer Joint Venture’, the roof elements were produced in seven different key countries and assembled on-site over a 15-month period. The construction phase was preceded by a component development process undertaken mainly in small family-owned businesses in southern and eastern Germany, drawn from a network of suppliers known to Birdair and Pfeifer. The entire roof as a properly performing system was in effect a design-and-supply solution, whose development was driven by the sub-contracting companies.

Project team: • Roof Sub-contractor: Birdair-Pfeifer Joint Venture Contracts manager: Christian Schloegl

Contractor’s design team: Peter Brugger, Wesley Terry, an Wright. • Main Contractor’s representatives: Ray Gamble (contracts) Liam Walsh (design management) • Glass installation: Glasbau Gipser, Halle, Germany Contracts manager: Matthias Klaerner • Structural design: SBP Schlaich Bergermann & Partners Engineering design team: Knut Goeppert, Thomas Moschner, Tobias Waldraff • Local Engineers: BKS Marian Sabol, Claus Heydenrech • Architectural design and detailing: GMP: Martin Glass, Lena Broegger, Patrick Hoffmann POINT Architects: Henning Rasmuss, Carolyn Helfenstein, Dino Kiratzidis, Wonga Majeke, Vanessa Kallaway, Jamain Moodley. * Cape Town Stadium – Between the Lines is distributed by On-The-Dot and it is available from as well as major bookstores.

translucent sheeting on high covers With a roof area if 22,000 m², Nelspruit’s Mbombela Stadium, along with Cape Town, is the highest cover of all the 2010 stadiums. The stadium has a seating capacity of 40,911 and 94% of its seats are under-roof. Half of the roofing comprises of translucent sheeting, was produced by Modek, and Polycarbonate roof sheeting. To create a seamless joint between the steel and GRP roofing, translucent sheets were produced to fit both above and below the metal sheeting in parts of the roof that alternated between steel and GRP sheeting. To help this new roofing design realise, Modek also designed specific expansion joints to accommodate the movement of the steel structure caused by the expansion and contraction of the structure. The roof slope is almost non-existent at only 1/40 or 1.4 degrees and no roof structure penetrates at the steel roof sheets. All the punctures fall within the translucent sheets, which are easier to flash using specially molded GRP sections. This way very long flashing elements running all the way from the top edge of the sheeting were eliminated. To prevent water being blown back at the end-lapse underneath the roof profile into the low pitch, a sealant was applied. This foam-type sealant was especially designed and dye-cut to fit the two different end-lapses. In addition to this all side-lapses were sealed with double line butyl roof tape to prevent both dirt settling under the over-lapse and to ensure waterproofing. Chemical additives were added to the translucent roof sheets in order to achieve the higher fire rating standards which were a prerequisite for the project. An added advantage of this retardant is ease of dosing and should fire occur, the nature of the product ensures that the translucent sheeting will disintegrate into powder and soot, with no toxic gasses. “The significance


of this is that should the roof catch alight, it will not fall in on crowds beneath,” explained Christo Pienaar, Marketing Director of Ampaglas Plastics Group. The stadium cost just over a billion Rand and it attracted three prestigious awards, namely the British overseas expertise award - winner of sport and recreation category 2010; Plascon Prism award - overall winner 2010; SAISC Steel Awards - Tubular steel award 2010. Continues on page 46




Continued from page 44

corrosion in roof sheeting and fasteners In North America, the Cold Formed Steel Engineers Institute produced a document on the required corrosion protection of screw fasteners, but no guidance on the selection of protection is provided per application. Lightweight steel framed construction is widely used in Europe (as well as other parts of the world) but corrosion protection of fasteners is largely left to the fabricator (International Zinc Association). Reitze Hylkema, Managing Director of Kare Industrial Supplies, recently gave a presentation about the standards, challenges and common problems associated with corrosion in roof sheeting and fasteners at the Corrosion Institute of Southern Africa. Are roofing fasteners the weakest link in roofing applications? Pic credit: Reitze Hylkema

“The problem with SANS 1273 – Fasteners for roof and wall coverings in the form of sheeting, is that it was completely outdated. Self drilling screws, which are most commonly used in industrial roofing applications, were not specified in the old standard. Corrosion resistance of fasteners as well as roofing washers also weren’t specified,” says Hylkema. “As a result the SANS 1273 was hardly ever used by specifiers, manufacturers and roll formers. The selection of fasteners was inherently left to the roofing contractor and these choices were usually influenced by price rather than quality or suitability of the fastener,” says Hylkema. Hylkema says that 3 – 5 micron electroplated screws, which do not always provide the required strength and mechanical performance for roof applications, are commonly used on sheeting with 19μm galvanizing and duplex coated sheeting.

SANS 1273 – corrosion resistance of fasteners • The minimum protective coating on any type of roofing fastener is 12micron electroplated zinc; • The corrosion resistance of the fastener must match that of the roof sheeting • The characteristics of the environment in which the fasteners will be used must be determined in accordance with ISO 9223 classification • Based on the information obtained above the appropriate fastener and coating must be selected according to the SANS1273 and AS3566.2 standard

the revised standard and very few fastener distributors supply fasteners that genuinely comply with the standard. One of the added problems is that very few architects or engineers specify the roofing fasteners for projects,” says Hylkema before adding that only one flat steel manufacturer specifies the corrosion resistant requirements on fasteners that are used on their product “Very few roll formers specify the corrosion class of fasteners that should be used on all their different types of roof sheeting. There is still very little or no inspection or control over the type of roofing fasteners that are used on projects. Testing done by independent laboratories are very expensive – they cost up to R45 000 for 10 samples in a sulphur dioxide test. These tests are supposed to be done on an ongoing basis making it prohibitive for any manufacturer or importer,” says Hylkema.

Classification and designation of corrosion resistance Corrosion resistance class

Atmosphere of intended use


General use in internal application


General use in other than external applications but where significant levels of condensation occur. External: Urban inland or mild environments


External use in mild, moderate industrial or marine environments. Categories C2 and C3 classified are in accordance with ISO 9223.


External use in severe marine or industrial environment. Category C4 is classified in accordance with ISO 9223


External use in very severe marine or industrial environment; Off shore environments

The revised standard SANS 1273 was revised and the new standard, which is largely based on the Australian Standard AS3566 – 2002, was published in November 2009. The new standard now includes specifications for self-drilling screws. “The mechanical properties of fasteners are based on part 1 of the Australian Standard and the corrosion resistance of fasteners is based on part 2 of the Australian Standard,” says Hylkema. “Although the SANS 1273 was published in November 2009, very little has been done to market the revised standard to the industry. Very few roll players within the industry have adopted



“There are different coating requirements for the different corrosion classes. Although the Australian Standard makes provision for hot dipped galvanised fasteners, this type of corrosion protection is not suitable for hardened high carbon steel self drilling screws with relatively small diameters,” says Hylkema.

Class 2 fasteners Coating Type

Minimum local metallic coating thickness


Electroplated zinc


Type C

Mechanically plated zinc


Type C

Mechanically plated zinc / tin


Type C

Class 3 fasteners Coating Type

Minimum local metallic coating thickness


Electroplated zinc


Type A

Mechanically plated zinc


Type A

Mechanically plated zinc / tin


Type A

“Many of the so-called Class 3 fasteners sold in South Africa do not comply with the SANS1273 standard,” says Hylkema before listing the following problems with Class 3 fasteners in the local market: • Screws are not prepared according to the standard before tested in salt spray and sulphur dioxide tests • The tin content in zinc / tin coatings is much lower than specified in the standard. (Tin is + - 12 times more expensive than zinc) • Test results used by fastener distributors are not independent and are unreliable • Fasteners without head markings make identification and traceability very difficult if not impossible

Class 4 fasteners Coating Type

Minimum local metallic coating thickness


Mechanically plated zinc / tin


Type A

“At this stage there is no specification for Class 5 environments. Coated carbon steel screws not suitable for this environment, but 304 and 316 Stainless steel screws are commonly used. Bi-metal stainless steel self drilling screws were specifically designed for these environments,” says Hylkema.

Right: Bi-metal screws used in Class 5 environments.

“The bi-metal screws consist of a carbon steel drill point and leading thread section which is welded onto a 304 or 316 stainless steel body and head as shown in the drawing. The carbon steel section drills the hole and taps the thread for the stainless steel section to follow through without the stainless steel threads flatting or stripping. The carbon steel section can corrode over time but won’t influence the corrosion resistance of the relevant part of the fastener that is actually holding the roof sheeting in position,” explains Hylkema.

Expected life span of fasteners Corrosion rate is known for ISO categories: Category


Corrosion rate Zn µm/yr



0.1 – 0.7



0.7 – 2.0



2.0 – 4.0


Very high

4.0 – 8.0

The life if a fastener can be determined if plating thickness is known. For example, ISO 9223 Class 2 corrosion rate is 0.7μm zinc and SANS1273 Class 2 electroplated fastener is 12μm zinc, so the expected life of the fastener is 17.14 years. If the ISO 9223 Class 3 corrosion rate is 2.0μm zinc and the SANS 1273 Class2 electroplated fastener is 12μm zinc, the expected life span of the fastener would amount to only 6 years. “This is an unacceptable life span for a fastener. A Class 3 fastener would offer 15 – 40 years,” comments Hylkema. Continues on page 48



Advantages of the new standard SANS1273 offers a number of advantages, such as the following: • The corrosion resistance required for all types of roofing fasteners is specified in the standard; • Specifiers that couldn’t use foreign standards, such as the AS3566 standard, on government buildings can now use a South African standard to specify fasteners; • Self-drilling screws and roofing washers are now included in the standard; • The life span and life cycle costing of roof sheeting and roofing fasteners can be determined;

“When roofing fasteners are specified, it levels the playing field for contractors because everybody needs to provide quotes on the same quality materials. Hopefully the revised standard will limit – or eliminate – the use of inferior fasteners,” concludes Hylkema. *Reitze Hylkema will be discussing the selection of coatings of roof fasteners suitable for ISO environment, the impact of various metals on corrosion around roofing and cladding fasteners as well as compliance and testing in Journal 5 of Walls & Roofs.

bamboo ceilings at barajas airport - mADRID One of the world’s largest airports, Barajas (Madrid) is a vast structure with all the complexities of a contemporary transport hub. The building is distributed over six floors; three above ground for check-in, security, boarding and baggage reclaim, and three underground levels for maintenance, transferring passengers and baggage processing. With a total area of 1,200,000 m², the New Terminal Area (NAT) can accommodate between 65 and 70 million passengers per annum. From top to bottom, interior of the building is based on colour schemes – depending on where you are, you may be in a blue, green, red or yellow zone. As you walk through Barajas, one colour fades into another. Unlike traditional airport buildings, nothing about this building is level and square. The ceiling is one of the most significant design features of the building. Bamboo was used to clad the ceiling, which forms graceful waves and curves high above your head. Large supporting columns support the ceiling, imitating tree trunks and branches that rise to meet the forest canopy.

The bamboo-clad ceiling at Barajas Airport waves in uneven and graceful curves. Picture courtesy of Daniel van der Merwe

strategy that would bring natural light down into the lower levels of the multi-level section. The solution is a series of light-filled, fullheight ‘canyons’ that are spanned by bridges.

Project details Client: Barajas International Airport, Madrid Architect: Richard Rogers Partnership, Estudio Lamella Daylight Design: Arup Lighting Photographer: Speirs + Major Completion date: 2006 Discipline: Architecture + Environment Awards: Radiance Award, IALD Awards, 2008 Award of Excellence, IALD Awards, 2008 Award of Merit, IIDA Awards, 2007 Lighting Design, Highly Commended, FX International Design Awards, 2006

Reducing noise levels in ceilings

Barajas Airport in Madrid. Pic credit: Daniel van der Merwe

MOSO International B.V., a company based in the Netherlands, installed their cellulose fleece-backed bamboo veneer panels. These panels are made from five layers of bamboo veneer pressed together with two layers of glass fibre giving them improved strength with an added ability to bend them as needed. The panels are also sealed with a fire retardant solution that meets all fire regulations in America and Europe. The designers (a consortium of Richard Rogers Partnership, the Spanish practice Estudio Lamela and two engineering companies TPS and Initec) focused on delivering an improved passenger experience, creating an attractive, peaceful atmosphere. This led to the utilisation of materials and finishes which would convey a sense of calm ( The design and lighting team needed to incorporate a


Saint-Gobain Gyproc has introduced two Rigitone acoustic board which offer noise reduction co-efficients of 0.70 and 0.90 (when installed as part of a recommended system. The boards are imported from Germany and supplied in large sheets that get fitted to a Donn screw up grid system that is fully concealed after installation. The boards can be fitted to curves and painted. “The two Rigitone perforation patterns that we are introducing to South African are giving specifiers the opportunity to upscale the efficiency and aesthetic appeal of the projects that they are working on,” says Heidi Olivier, Marketing Manager of Saint-Gobain Gyproc. “The boards offer outstanding sound reduction properties when fitted in standard applications, but their performance can be further improved by adding insulation and/or increasing the distance between the ceiling and the soffit,” concludes Olivier. Walls & Roofs would like to give thanks and acknowledgement to Henning Rasmuss, Modek, Michael Anderson, Reitze Hylkema, Daniel van der Merwe, Bruce Trembling, Heidi Olivier and Kerry Haggard, for the information they contributed to this article. v



Your No.

WATERPROOFING SOLUTION For all your roofing requirements and maintenance programs.

Can be applied over old waterproofing without removal

• We specialise in assisting our clients with waterproofing solutions for both pitched and flat roofs. • Waterproofing products can be applied to any surface from metal to concrete, and it carries a 15-year maintenance free warranty.



Can be applied by brush, towel or spray, once applied and cured, it forms a thick plastic skin that will form and remain a flexible waterproof coating. Can be applied to concrete, plaster, wood asbestos, ferrous and non ferrousmetals, fiberglass, plastic, fibre cement and corrugated iron, It is available in any colour.


Can be applied from horisontal floor to vertical wall, thereby providing a completely seamless and waterproof surface that is easily washable and resistant to most chemicals & oils providing a maintenance-free surface where you need it most.





Turning into a valuable building product Zinc is a chemical element found in the earth’s crust occurring between 10 and 300 mg/kg, 70 mg/kg on average.

Pictures top to bottom: 1. Zinc is not only appealing from an architectural point of view - it is an asset in construction. 2. The roof and cladding systems also come with a variety of architectural details such as roof edges, verges, chimneys and so forth. 3. Apart from ore processing, zinc production relies more and more on recycling material.


inute amounts can also be found in the air and water. Worldwide zinc deposits available with the current mining technology are estimated at 3 400 million tons – enough for the next 700 years based on current production volumes. And this figure does not yet take into account the amount of recyclable material. Zinc is also the most important component of RHEINZINK® titanium zinc. RHEINZINK obtains the pure zinc, as defined by the EN1179 standard, from regional zinc producers for its titanium zinc products. The raw materials for these come as bulk fine-grained zinc concentrate – zinc ores processed in the ore mines – chiefly from Canada, Australia as well as Central and South America. Current zinc-producing processes are zinc electrolysis and the Imperial Smelting and New Jersey Zinc Distillation processes. Apart from ore processing, zinc production relies more and more on recycling material. The raw material for RHEINZINK titanium zinc is Special High Grade (SHG) zinc, which has a purity of 99,995%. It is composed of pure zinc (as defined by the EN1179 standard) and minute amounts of titanium and copper. The titanium the company uses is derived from different countries around the globe, and the copper from recycled scrap material. These additives are important for the colour of the patina and the material’s properties such as the high ductility and creep rupture strength, a raised recrystallisation threshold and a lowered coefficient of thermal expansion. “Zinc is a low-cost and eco-friendly means to extend the lifespan of steel constructions (e.g. buildings, cars). Because of zinc’s low melting point and the use of state-of-the-art manufacturing processes, RHEINZINK titanium zinc is a construction metal with relatively little primary energy use and thus low CO2 emission. The impact category indicators (greenhouse effect, ozone depletion, acidification, eutrophication, ground-level ozone production) are accordingly low,” explains Stephen Wilkinson, managing director of RHEINZINK South Africa. “RHEINZINK products are not only appealing from an architectural point of view. They are also an asset in construction: they make a valuable contribution to preserving the building fabric. Our product range includes everything from small custommade coils, strips, sheets and plates up to 6 m long all the way to complete roof, façade, roof drainage and solar panel systems,” says Wilkinson. Intelligent roof and façade-cladding systems are a key part of RHEINZINK’s product range, along with a variety of gutters and pipes as well as architectural details (such as roof edges, verges, chimneys and so forth). “Build with RHEINZINK, secure in the knowledge that you are acquiring lasting value. In addition to its statutory liability, RHEINZINK offers a 30-year material guarantee. That provides reliability,” concludes Wilkinson. v RHEINZINK South Africa Tel: 021 6712600 Email: Website:





Bandage for



In June 2010, a six-megalitre reservoir began construction near the King Shaka International Airport outside Durban with the help of Sika South Africa, supplier of quality construction products. The eThekwini Municipality contracted Fakazi Construction on the project to install Sika’s Combiflex bandage system to the expansion and construction joints of the walls of the reservoir, to ensure that the reservoir stays watertight for the entire design life of the structure. Surface strength tests were conducted where the bandage was to be laid to check the quality of the preparation, which proved to be satisfactory. These tests were carried out before the application of the Sikadur-Combiflex jointing system to ensure that the Sikadur-31 CF Normal would bond well to the substrate and not fail when the expansion joints move. Approximately 500m of Sikadur-Combiflex bandage (100mm x 1mm) for sealing high-movement and irregular joints was used, together with 20 kits (7,5 litres each) of Sikadur-31 CF Normal, a two-part thixotropic epoxy resin adhesive.


The Sikadur-Combiflex Bandage System is a high-performance, joint-sealing system consisting of a flexible Hypalon rubber waterproofing tape and Combiflex epoxy adhesive, in this case Sikadur-31 CF Normal. It is used primarily in the construction of water-retaining structures and reservoirs; hydroelectric power plants; sewage treatment plants; tunnels and culverts; roof or basement joints; and in swimming pools. As a highly specialised waterproofing system, it is used for expansion and construction joints as well as for cracks; when fixed properly, it allows irregular and high movement in more than one direction, whilst maintaining a high-quality seal. The last Sika product used on this hilltop project was Sikaflex PRO-2 HP, a multi-use, one-component, polyurethane sealant. This high-performance sealant was specified for sealing joints on the structure as it is designed for expansion and connection joints, providing good ageing and weather resistance, bubble-free curing, and 25% movement capability. The Nyaninga reservoir was completed efficiently thanks to Sika, much to the delight of the local community members who will definitely benefit from its addition to the developing North Coast area. v Sika South Africa Tel: 031 792 6500 Email: Website:




Thermal imagers

for building inspection


he affordable rugged Fluke Thermal Imagers are workhorse tools designed for the demands of building envelope restoration and remediation, inspection and roofing applications. Whether required to perform energy audits, locate the origin of construction problems or find roof leaks, Fluke offers an economical solution for complete detection, analysis and documentation. • Fluke Ti32 Industrial Thermal Imager: Designed for troubleshooting and preventive maintenance of electrical installations, electro-mechanical equipment, process equipment, HVAC/R equipment and more.  • Fluke TiR32 Thermal Imager for Building Diagnostics: Designed for building envelope energy auditing, restoration and remediation, inspection and roofing professionals who want to offer a value-added service. The Fluke Ti32 and TiR32 are the first imagers on the market to incorporate a powerful 320x240 sensor to provide HighDefinition, strikingly crisp, detailed images. Using Fluke’s patented IR-Fusion® technology, users can marry high-precision thermal images with visual (visible light) images in full-screen, picture-inpicture, or blended views for enhanced problem detection and analysis. “IR-Fusion is the only solution available with physical parallax correction, which enables perfect alignment, pixel by pixel, of both infrared and visible images. Fluke products are the only thermal imagers on the market to incorporate IRFusion in both camera and


software,” explains Val Verwer, marketing director of Comtest, a company that provides a range of test and measurement solutions in Southern Africa. Users can record voice comments with every image taken with the Ti32. It includes a three-button menu designed for intuitive operation and navigation, on-screen emissivity correction, transmission correction and high temperature alarm (dew point temperature alarm on the TiR32). Each unit comes with two field-swappable, rechargeable batteries that enable virtually continuous imager use. Fluke SmartView® Software (with free software upgrades for the life of the product) is included with each thermal imager. SmartView software is a modular suite of tools for

viewing, annotating, editing and analysing infrared images that fully supports Fluke IR Fusion technology. It enables users to edit images in five viewing modes and generate customised professional reports in a few steps. Fluke 3D-IR™ three-dimensional viewing makes hot or cold spots “pop out” of the background for easy viewing and analysis. v Comtest Tel: 011 608 8520 Fax: 011 608 2705 E-mail:




Thermal bridging can drop R-values by


The Department of Trade and Industry published an amendment to the National Building Regulations and Buildings Standards Act 2008 (Act No.103 of 1977) in June 2010 to introduce requirements for the energy usage in buildings. their resistance to heat transfer, a term called R-value. The higher the R-value, the lower the heat transfer. But, are R-values reliable in predicting energy performance? It has been found that R-values don’t tell the whole story – they bear little resemblance to how insulation actually performs in a building system. When real world factors such as thermal bridging, air infiltration and extreme temperatures are present, some insulation products can lose more than half their R-value. Research conducted by TIASA members at the South African Fenestration and Insulation Energy Rating Association (SAFIERA) in the Rotatable Guarded Hot Box (RGHB) has shown that some insulation products will maintain their stated R-value and outperform certain others. Tests conducted in the RGHB show that in roofing applications thermal bridging can reduce the R-value of a roof system up to 35%. The results obtained from testing in the RGHB are not only of immense benefit to professionals in the building industry but equally to manufacturers and suppliers in the construction industry. Above: Thermal bridging is the transfer of heat across building elements, which have less thermal resistance than the added insulation. This decreases the overall R-value. Wall frames and ceiling beams are examples of thermal bridges, having a lower R-value than the insulating material placed between them. Because of this, the overall R-value of a typical ceiling and/or wall is reduced.


SS SANS 10400 Part XA Energy usage in buildings and SANS 204 Energy Efficiency in Buildings require minimum performance values for walls, fenestration and roof assemblies (including insulation) in buildings. The R-values, total R-values, total U-values and SHGC (Solar Heat Gain Coefficient) contained in SANS 204 may be used to comply with the requirements of the Regulation on energy efficiency. With the introduction of Energy Efficiency Standards in South Africa to intervene and to reduce peak electricity demand usage, thermal insulation will play an integral part in the future designs of buildings. Every designer knows that the R-value of a material is important in specifying insulation products. Insulation materials are rated by

With the introduction of Energy Efficiency Standards in South Africa to intervene and to reduce peak electricity demand usage, thermal insulation will play an integral part in the future designs of buildings. 56

Above: The thermo graphic photography offers clues to where energy is being wasted in this older house. Red and yellow patches indicate escaping heat, while new double pane windows appear cool blue. By sealing in warmth, the windows cut heating and cooling costs, which can account for up to half a family’s energy bill.

Designers must also give thought to the safety of the products they specify. An “energy-efficient” product must also be “safe” to use. Not all products have been tested for their fire performance. Insulation products must be tested and classified in accordance with SANS 428 The fire performance classification of thermal insulated building envelope systems. Thermal Insulation Association of Southern Africa (TIASA) Tel: 011 805 5002 E-mail: Website:




European Coatings Show 2011 The Dow Chemical Company’s presence at this year’s European Coatings Show which takes place in Nürnberg, Germany, from 29-31 March, will take the form of a ‘competence centre’.

To improve efficiency and help reduce costs in cement renders, Dow Construction Chemicals will also be promoting its portfolio of products specially developed to answer all the key requirements in this application and will show how improved performance can enhance the productivity in cement renders. Whatever the industry’s needs, Dow has the technology, creativity and expertise to help its customers to differentiate their products, to gain market share and to increase speed-to-market. For example, the global development towards more environmentally acceptable paints and coatings results in a higher susceptibility towards microbial spoilage, while at the same time reducing the portfolio of active substances available for paint manufacturers. Dow Microbial Control has developed and notified Methyl-BIT, a new active substance, which is an additional building block for powerful and sustainable in-can preservation. “We are at the forefront of the specialty materials industry to keep you ahead of yours. We are always thinking about how to help you revolutionise your products. We are very much the ‘Experts’ Expert’ in the industry and you can benefit from that


he competence centre, with its main stage, breakout zones and display areas, will provide Dow with a high-profile, informative platform from which to promote its latest products and technologies for the architectural, civil engineering, industrial coatings, building and construction industries. Five Dow businesses will combine to demonstrate the benefits of the chemical company’s latest technological advances in their industries. These are: paint and coatings business Dow Coating Materials; specialty coatings additive expert Angus Chemical Company; anti-microbial protector Dow Microbial Control; construction industry-focused Dow Construction Chemicals; and the epoxy systems infrastructure protection specialist Dow UPPC. From rooftop to floor, Dow has products that contribute to high-performance and durable coatings that protect homes, buildings and structures, using less of the world’s scarce natural resources and creating less of an overall environmental footprint. Responding to the growing demand for energy-efficient and durable systems, Dow Construction Chemicals will introduce its new cool, reflective roof coating system, a solution that deflects the heat of the sun and keeps buildings cool – particularly useful in hot countries.

From rooftop to floor, Dow has products that contribute to high-performance and durable coatings that protect homes, buildings and structures, using less of the world’s scarce natural resources and creating less of an overall environmental footprint. expertise. Come and talk to us and find out how our sciencebased solutions help to create products that help you to succeed,” said a Dow spokesperson. Among many of the new products on show will be leadingedge technologies that improve durability, cut costs, reduce VOC’s (Volatile Organic Compounds) and odour, and improve overall handling and performance. This includes microbial control products that keep paint in pristine condition in the can and prevent mould growing in the steamy conditions of the bathroom; and coatings that protect flooring and contribute to healthier interior conditions. v Dow Coating Materials Tel: +44 (0)787 625 7119 E- mail: Website:



The Looming Climate Change Reality Innovative Insulation Manufacturer suggests

what can be done

Award-winning green insulation product, Eco-Insulation. Photo by Gareth Griffiths Imaging.


t’s a good thing when a leading global figure asserts himself (or herself ) on the subject of global warming and climate change. Charles, Prince of Wales, recently stated clearly that people who do not accept the reality of climate change are “Playing a reckless game of roulette”. He went on to ask “How are these people going to face their grandchildren and admit to them that they failed their future?”. (Independent Media - 10 Feb 2011) Cecil Homan, founder of visionary thermal insulation business, Eco-Insulation finds this a chilling thought, “We are firmly nailing our colours to the mast in the campaign against global warming. Eco-Insulation installers and their families, including the younger generation are supporting us, too. They realise this is for their own sakes.” “We believe that by placing Eco-Insulation Cellulose Fibre Ceiling Insulation in the roof, you are reducing your energy reliance on heating or cooling. In addition you are helping to recycle and even upgrade a stream of paper waste, by converting it into our award-winning, SABS-Approved, firerated thermal insulation. So Eco-Insulation truly deserves its green status. Our process of manufacture is low energy and adds little to the embedded energy of the recycled newsprint we use. In addition, we add the minimum of chemicals to the process, including only an environmentally friendly,

chemically stable, fire retardant. This enables our product to be fire rated “No Spread of Flame” – Classified B/B1/2 The agreement some time back by Nersa granting Eskom to a 25% per annum tariff increase over 3 years, places specifiers and building owners in a very clear position. The time for talking about energy saving is over and right now should be a phase of implementation. The inclusive of passive energy efficiency measures in new building projects and retrofits is a clear starting point for all developers thinking sustainability – as early as during the environment control planning and design process. In addition, government and developers need to think about low cost housing. “The fitting of solar geysers to many low cost housing projects is an admirable move, but true energy efficiency in low cost housing will only be effective where the roof is fitted with a ceiling that is insulated, too.” “Go to - or call one of our professional installers whose details appear on the website, to see what can be done to mitigate against climate change and rising energy costs TODAY”, Homan suggests. v Eco-Insulation Tel: 021 555 3766 Fax: 021 555 3776 E-mail:



Making ceilings more

sustainable T

he professional and the developer who want to register their projects for the Green Building Council of South Africa’s Green Star Rating will have peace of mind if they invest in ThermacousTex, says Nic Dancer, managing director of ThermacousTex, a division of Frame Industrials (Pty) Ltd (in the Frame Fibres division of the Frame Textile Group).

“ThermacousTex is the first thermal and acoustic ceiling product to be verified ‘Green’ by Eco-Specifier South Africa,” says Dancer. Over the last few years, ThermacousTex has spent a great deal of time on research and development, making their range of products sustainable and reducing their carbon footprint in the

“Our aim is to provide sustainable energy-saving products which offer multiple benefits. The insulated ceilings, for example, provide a high-quality finish while simultaneously offering great acoustic benefits. With the yearly electricity hikes, the benefit of saving on electricity will also become more crucial,” says Dancer. ThermacousTex Board • Butt-edged ceiling panel • Complies with SANS 428 Fire Standard • Outstanding acoustical performance • Provides thermal insulation • Performs well in high humidity areas (up to 95% RH) • Thermal Conductivity: 0,034 W/m.K

manufacturing and delivery process. This was recognised when they were awarded the “KZN recycler of the year award” in 2006. “Our aim is to provide sustainable energy-saving products which offer multiple benefits. The insulated ceilings, for example, provide a high-quality finish while simultaneously offering great acoustic benefits. With the yearly electricity hikes, the benefit of saving on electricity will also become more crucial,” says Dancer. ThermacousTex is an acoustic and thermal product which can be used in applications varying from skimmed and suspended ceilings to over purlin. It is also suitable for domestic roofing and cavity walls for wooden houses where acoustic and thermal insulation is required. v ThermacousTex Tel: 0861 DATLINK (823 5465) E-mail: Website:



Striking roof structure crowns

Sandton City’s entire retail space, including the extension, will total 143 690 m² on completion of this phase

Sandton City extension

The futuristic steel roof of the Sandton City Shopping Centre extension structure, which covers the new entrance court to the South East extension, has been completed, adding an exciting new vista to the skyline of the Sandton CBD.


he regional shopping centre’s expansion and refurbishment project – which involves interior refurbishments and a total of 30 000 m² of new retail space – is set to further underline the centre’s standing as one of Africa’s leading retail icons. “The completion of the innovative steel roof structure clearly indicates the rapid pace of the project, and has caused much excitement as the vision to reposition Sandton City unfolds in this incredible structure,” says Julie Hillary, General Manager Sandton Region, of Liberty Properties. “Within nine months the development will be complete and will bring with it an added realm of unparalleled shopping variety.” The 40 m diameter steel roof structure – comprising 250 tonnes of steelwork – mimics the profile of a protea flower and will be clad with innovative energy- efficient material in the next few months. The design comprises twelve bifurcated columns which support curved trusses that span from the columns to a central core. This core is placed towards the back of the atrium so the trusses vary in length, with the longest spanning 17 metres. The core also provides the enclosure for two lifts. The creation of the steel roof structure commenced in November last year, and with the dedication of the contractors who worked through the traditional ‘builders break’ and battled against severe weather conditions, the structure was completed at the end of January 2011. Extensive leasing deals are being confirmed and secured with leading national and international brands. The new extension will provide space for national flagship stores and the remaining spaces are reserved for exciting international fashion retailers.


“Sandton City’s entire retail space, including the extension, will total 143 690 m² on completion of this phase, which will take the complex, that includes the hotel and office component, to a massive 215 000 m²,” notes Hillary. “Currently the Fountain Court in the existing centre is under refurbishment and work on the Mugg & Bean court is set to commence in mid-2011.” The R1,77 billion first phase of the Sandton City redevelopment, undertaken by Liberty Properties on behalf of the property’s owners – Liberty Group (75%) and Pareto Ltd (25%) – serves to expand and improve the centre to enhance its leading position in the retail sector and to meet the ever-growing needs of its market. v Sandton City Tel: 011 217 6000 E-mail: Website:


Thatch roof solutions that work

Thatch Protection Services has protected over 900 000m2 of thatch since its inception in 1991. The company developed Supercote, a water-based fire retardant comprising stable acrylic polymer resins and anti-fungal, anti-bacterial and fire-resistant components.

ENVIRONMENTALLY FRIENDLY Supercote is non-toxic, giving specifiers an environmentfriendly solution for extending the life of thatch roofs and cutting the cost of maintenance. The product dries to a clear finish and is professionally manufactured to ISO / SABS standards.

APPLICATION Supercote is applied to the thatch using a high-pressure spray gun to achieve penetration of approximately 4-5 cm. The coating overcomes poor compaction in order to reduce maintenance. The product is very effective against : • Veld fires • Lightning • Fireworks • Dust-rain

• Sand infiltration • Monkey damage • Bird damage • Storm damage

PROJECTS • • • • • • • •

Lion and Rhino Nature Reserve – Kromdraai, 1600m² Hans Merensky Club – Phalaborwa, 8000m² Caltex Bloemfontein, Colesburg, Van Reenen, 4 700m² Shamwari Bush Lodge – 800m² Patterson, Eastern Cape Pilansburg Airport, 1 000m² Ivory Tree Lodge – Pilansberg Game Lodge, 2000m² Sondela Nature Reserve – Bela Bela, 12 000m² PheZulu Game Estate,11 500m² Bothashill, KZN

THATCH PROTECTION SERVICES Tel: 011 422 4593 • Fax: 011 422 6280 • E-mail: Website:



Renovation of architectural landmark –

Montrose House, Mpophomeni

© Desere Strydom - Safintra Roofing Coastal (Pty) Ltd KZN


ontrose House is situated on the farm Rietvallei which originally formed part of a Boer Land Grant of 600 acres to the Pretorius family. In 1855 the property was purchased by Dr. William Addison, a Byrne Settler. He was responsible for building the magnificent homestead. Rietvallei farm was bought in 1911 by Charles Lund and ES Goodwill. After the death of his father in 1923, Guy Lund took over the property and it remained in the Lund family for many decades. Tragedy struck when the property was expropriated for the formation of the Mpophomeni Township, a construct of the then South Africa Government to remove as many of the workers that worked for British Tyre and Rubber from living in Kwa-Mevana. Guy Lund was so affected by the expropriation that he committed suicide. The site of Montrose House is thus poignant – not only were the families of the people settled in Mpophomeni deeply affected by the move, but also the family that suffered expropriation in the name of separate development. Montrose House’s early history as part of a Voortrekker farm, the cognisant architectural manipulation of the old, simple tworoomed structure into a formal residence, and its subsequent poignant participation in the structural creation of apartheid policy, make it a unique example of a building that has a multitude of historical, social and political links in Kwazulu-Natal. Debbie Whelan from Archaic Consulting was approached by Claire Adderley from the Howick Museum with regard to carrying out an inspection of Montrose House, with a view to all or part of it becoming a museum. The report needed to contain guidelines for the repairs required but also needed to serve as a document that could be used to obtain funding and in tender applications. Montrose House was found to be in a reasonable condition, given the circumstances and years of neglect. Despite damage caused by the cat’s claw creeper and lack of maintenance of the valley gutters, the building was found to be highly redeemable. The fact that the house was over sixty years old afforded it protection by the KwaZulu-Natal Heritage Act no 10 of 1997 and all repairs to the property had to be submitted to AMAFA Heritage


KZN for approval. Work carried out had to be done by competent and approved contractors, experienced in judicious repair work. In the third quarter of 2010, Safal Steel and Safintra Roofing were approached by Debbie Whelan from Archaic Consulting requesting the companies’ assistance in the renovation project on a pro bono basis. Safal National Sales & Marketing Manager Philip Truebody and COO of Safintra Roofing Coastal (Pty) Ltd KZN Marc Arnould visited the site and unanimously agreed that the project met the criteria from a Corporate Social Responsibility perspective, given the history and intended purpose of the building. Technical expertise was provided by Safintra Roofing Coastal in terms of on-site measurement and guidance in the preparation of a cutting list. Safal Steel free-issued the Colorplus material, in Sunset Red. The coils were converted free of charge by Safintra into SAF762 Corrugated and delivered to the site, some fifteen kilometres south of Howick in the KwaZulu-Natal Midlands. With the restoration nearing completion, this majestic example of a typical Midlands farmhouse in the Natal veranda style has certainly regained some of its former glory. The beauty of the intricate stonework walls, proud red corrugated roof and regal chimneys paint a splendid picture in the rural landscape with views sweeping all the way to Midmar Dam; complete with the laughter of local children playing in the trees in the grounds. Both Safal and Safintra Roofing Coastal are privileged to have been part of the restoration of this national architectural landmark. Article by Desere Strydom for Safintra Roofing (Pty) Ltd. For more information visit or email v Safintra Roofing & Steel Tel: 011 823 4027 Fax: 011 823 4288 Email: Website:




Interior Spaces

– offices of

The focus of office planning and design has shifted from the needs of the organisation to those of the individual workers.

THE FUTURE “The workplace” used to refer to closedoff offices in poorly lit rooms. Nowadays, economics and communication have shifted corporate environments not only to create open-plan spaces, but also move towards creating areas where people can relax, engage, communicate, be creative and, above all, work as efficiently and effectively as possible. Interior designers, lighting consultants, furniture suppliers and decorators have continued to innovate in order to provide the latest trends that incorporate flexibility, ergonomics and practicality. Walls & Roofs takes a look at the latest products, the newest designs and some thought leadership in the field of interior spaces. Shifting needs According to Robert A. Brown and Lois Goodell from the International Interior Design Association, the focus of office planning and design has shifted from the needs of the organisation to those of the individual workers. “This was largely because companies in many sectors began to compete for top talent within a smaller, highly selective demographic of young



workers,” say Brown and Goodell ( There are a number of factors in shaping a more holistic view of the office as organisations strive to balance the demands of multiple generations of workers (the workforce in most organisations now spans three demographics: Baby Boomers – born 1946-1964; Generation X – born 1965-1977; and Generation Y – born 1978-early 2000s), the speedy deployment of emerging technologies, an awareness of the need for environmental sustainability and a recognition of the growing social role of the workplace. “Aging Boomers are still the largest group, but the mix is changing quickly as 20-something workers. For example, the youngest workers, who have grown up wired, love technology and the flexibility it gives them to multitask in a variety of settings, including non-traditional ones. They also prefer informality to hierarchy. Designing space that capitalizes on the strengths of this new generation of workers and, at the same time, serves the broad needs of the entire workforce has encouraged the development of more options for everyone,” says Brown and Goodell.

“I believe the key for the office of the future is functional but adaptable spaces which inspire creativity,” Riley tells

Re-evaluating existing models

incorporation of street edge boundaries and the outdoors, and consideration for the local community, can significantly enhance both the working environment and the identity of the business,” says Riley. Their corporate office was redesigned using demolished structural elements wherever possible and the result is a functional, open, creative and flexible space, able to grow and adapt as required. “To soften the industrial feel of the original warehouse space, the use of natural materials and especially wood was critical. Timber frames and plywood sheet cladding were selected as separators of the reception and open office area, largely for their durability, strength and cost efficiency, as well as the textural highlights they bring to a space,” says Riley.

Matt Riley, principal architect of Tonic Architecture + Design, says that the traditional model of office or studio space needs to be re-evaluated in order to make an impact. “I believe the key for the office of the future is functional but adaptable spaces which inspire creativity,” Riley tells “Improved internal functional interaction for occupants, better

• Riley gives these tips for contemporary office design: • Changes in the business need to be accommodated, so consider how a space can both retract and expand. • Enhance communication and creativity with the positioning and layout of desk spaces and workstations.

Tips for modern office design



• Soften a corporate or industrial feel by introducing a natural material, such as wood. • Highlight the external identity of the building and provide a link to the surrounding community.

The effects of lighting Delores Ginthner, a lighting consultant and interior designer in Minnesota as well as the past-president of the Interior Design Educators Council (IDEC), says that sometimes interior designers light the spaces with an understanding of lighting design excellence and, at other times, it takes a lighting designer to make the vision of excellence a reality. “A variety of designers may function as the lighting designer, i.e., the architect, electrical engineer, facility manager, interior designer, landscape architect, or urban planner. While the profession is relatively small, there is a chance it might be one of that rare breed that call themselves ‘lighting designers’,” says Ginthner. Ginthner says that designers must consider many things, including the amount of illumination as one of the design criteria. Lighting designers think about how behaviour is affected by lighting. Here are a few interesting examples of how lighting shapes behaviour: • Visibility of vertical and horizontal junctions aids orientation • People follow the brightest path • Brightness can focus attention • Facing-wall luminance is a preference • Lighting can affect body position

Creating impressions with lighting Ginthner says that there are elements in a space that affect our subjective impressions and that design professionals make an even stronger statement by getting the lighting to express the same impression as other elements. • To create the following impressions, here is how to manipulate lighting conditions: Pleasant: Instead of the majority of lighting coming down

from the ceiling, use a non-uniform distribution of brightness in wall lighting. • Public: Use a more uniform distribution of light from predominantly overhead lighting sources and rely on higher levels of illumination. • Relaxed: Use wall lighting, non-uniform distribution and lower light levels. • Spacious: Provide overall high levels of illumination with even distribution of light on the walls and uniform lighting on all surfaces. • Visually clear: Provide higher luminance on the activity/task planes, with peripheral luminance.

Innovations from Orgatec Last year’s Orgatec convention, which is the leading international modern office and facility trade fair, saw numerous innovations and solutions for the challenges posed by everyday office routine. The fair was held from 26 – 30 October 2010 in Cologne Germany, under the theme “Better office – Greater success” and one of the key themes was the fact that the modern office is undergoing a process of constant change. “Communication and cooperation in alternating teams determine everyday work routine. Correspondingly, all the permanent workplaces are complemented by desk-sharing and temporary workstations, and classic individual offices are supplemented by open-room structures. The office facilities, furnishings and design must fulfil these requirements,” says Oliver P. Kuhrt, Executive Vice President of Koelnmesse GmbH, the organizer of Orgatec. “As a result, tables and chairs adjust to their frequently changing owners and are designed to promote movement. Modular furniture assumes roompartitioning functions in order to enable an interaction between communication and concentrated working in open-office landscapes. At the same time, refined, sophisticated lighting and acoustic systems ensure an optimum, motivating atmosphere. Not least, an increasing number of communal areas are being created, which can be used on a multi-functional basis, while modern media technology is being increasingly integrated in furniture, and working and conferencing are clearly facilitated. In brief – flexibility is trumps,” says Kuhrt.



Digital origami in Milan

Media technology in the office – ready yet invisible One of the new trends for interior design is keeping the omnipresent media and conference technology at hand, without making it a source of optical irritation or disruption. Design studios such as Deckers Design, Element One and Spectral Audio Möbel have created furniture that conceals monitors, projectors or loudspeakers at the touch of a button. Microphones can be directly retracted into the conference table or integrated in monitors, and what appear to be quite normal glass tops are suddenly transformed into projection walls with touchscreen technology.

Colour in the workplace A lot of research has been done on the supposed psychological effects of colour. Red, for example, is said to be energetic and aggressive, yellow is uplifting, and blue is tranquil. But numerous

Laboratory for Visionary Architecture (LAVA) created a window installation for the famous Italian department store la Rinascente for its ‘Vetrine di Natale’ 2010 (Christmas Windows). An origami coral reef was created using 1500 recycled and recyclable cardboard molecules. “The sculpture played with space by climbing up walls and arching over to create coral caves. Based on the geometrical structures of sea foam and corals, the colourful reef came to life through dynamic lighting and sound,” says Chris Bosse, one of three directors of LAVA. The installation showed how a particular module, copied from nature, can generate architectural space, and how the intelligence of the smallest unit dictates the intelligence of the overall system. Ecosystems such as coral reefs act as a metaphor for an architecture where the individual components interact in symbiosis to create an environment. Current trends in parametric modelling, digital fabrication and materials science were applied to the space-filling installation. “In urban terms, the smallest homes, the spaces they create, the energy they use, the heat and moisture they absorb, multiply into a bigger organisational system, whose sustainability depends on their intelligence,” says Bosse.

Continues on page 70

Pink prison experiment In the late 1970s, a study (Schauss, 1979) was done to predict whether colour could have a positive effect on one’s psyche. According to the study, when inmates in Seattle, Washington, were placed in bright pink prison cells, they exhibited less aggressive traits. After the findings were presented, many prisons in the US and Canada immediately painted their cells the same bright pink colour. When the study was repeated a few years later at York University in Toronto, the same effects were not detected.



Continued from page 69

Warm colours are more arousing than cool colours, red and, to a lesser extent, the other warm hues of orange and yellow, speed up mo­tor reactions and impair the efficiency of work performance.

myths and preconceptions exist about the effects of the colours, says Nancy Kwallek, director of the interior design program at the University of Texas. “Though empirical evidence in this area is limited, the prevailing view is that warm colours are more arousing than cool colours, that red and, to a lesser extent, the other warm hues of orange and yellow, speed up mo­tor reactions and impair the efficiency of work performance. The experimental evi­dence to support these views is sparse, contradictory, and of limited usefulness in predicting the effect of colour in the in­terior environment on office workers’ pro­ ductivity and mood,” says Kwallek. “These findings are questionable; many of the notions about colours making people feel calm or depressed are outdated. Although colour is an integral part of design, very little empirical evidence exists to support some of the popularly held ideas about the effects of colour on task performance, worker productivity, and human psychology,” says Kwallek. According to Kwallek, it’s important to realise that individuals exist within enclosed structures for most of their lives. “Creating office work spaces that are inviting, uplifting and energetic is a worthy design goal. Designers need to understand how spaces affect individuals so they can design spaces that counter­balance the chaos and stress of everyday life and cre­ate environments of personal wellbeing,” says Kwallek. Continues on page 72

“Creating office work spaces that are inviting, uplifting and energetic is a worthy design goal. Designers need to understand how spaces affect individuals so they can design spaces that counter­balance the chaos and stress of everyday life and cre­ ate environments of personal wellbeing,” says Kwallek.





Continued from page 70

Many experiments have been done to understand how colour within the work environment affects occupants. Kwallek refers to NASA, who funded an extensive review of literature on colour to determine which colour combinations would create the most seemingly pleasant, spacious and productive environment. “The quintessential office color is white and in a prior study the workers were less productive in a white of­fi ce than in any other office color; therefore mono­chromatic white was selected as one of three office color schemes to be examined,” says Kwallek. A monochromatic white office was also chosen to inform NASA of the effects of white on worker productivity and mood over a long period of time in a relatively confined space. The other two offices employed varying colour schemes. “The col­ours were selected based on NASA’s conjecture that the largest surface area should be high in value (light), low in saturation (dull), that the second largest area should be medium in value and saturation, and, fi­nally, that the trim and accents

Walls & Roofs would like to give thanks and acknowledgement to the following people who contributed information for this article: Nancy Kwallek from the University of Texas, Jane Silversmith from LAVA, Delores Ginthner, Anne Roselt from Plascon and Julia Schmidt from Orgatec. v

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IN THIS ISSUE: Changing the way design professionals use concrete

should be high in sat­uration (bright) and either high or low in value (light or dark). Thus, a light blue-green office was chosen for comparison of a predominantly cool colour scheme with a predominantly warm colour scheme,” says Kwallek. Speed in performance of clerical tasks, accuracy on proofreading clerical tasks and the mood of office workers were studied to determine the effects of these three colour schemes on workers. According to the findings, workers in the red office reported higher negative mood characteristics compared with workers in the blue-green office. “However, when considering screen­ing ability, greater negative mood aspects were report­ed for low screeners compared with high screeners in the red and white offices. Possibly the starkness of the white office (lacking contrast) was more disturbing for low screeners than high screeners who could more easily ignore the starkness of that office,” says Kwallek. The three different colour schemes did not impact productivity differently. Only when individual differences in the ability to screen irrelevant environmental stimuli were taken into ac­count did the colour schemes exhibit a differential im­pact on productivity. Anne Roselt, a colour expert from Plascon Paint, disagrees with Kwallek. “Having worked colour for 17 years, read countless books and even stayed with reknowed colour therapists who have achieved remarkable results with colour healing. Just try painting your entire office bright red or bright yellow and work in it all day and you will realize the huge effect colour has on you physically, emotionally and psychologically. Almost just as bad paint your office all white and work in it all day. Scientifically it has been proven that different colours have different wavelengths and frequencies and these affect us whether we like a colour or not,” says Roselt.“Colours need to be chosen depending on the type of work and the surroundings. For example, you would not paint a factory with loud machines red however red in an advertising agency can work really well. White in a hospital while clean and hygienic can make patients feel cold and isolated whereas soft pastel shades are more comforting and soothing – this is just common sense,” concludes Roselt.

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The projects that made headlines Green product identification Ground Zero: Freedom Tower






wall Avant-garde


at the forefront

of fashion

Wall Design of Johannesburg is proud to be the sole distributor throughout sub-Saharan Africa and the Indian Ocean Islands of highquality wall coverings from Netherlandsbased BN International where one of the latest additions to their sales programme is the superb range known as Organza.





nspiration for Organza has been drawn from French châteaux with ‘a twist of Manhattan chic’. BN International says silhouettes are once again at the forefront of fashion, and this beautifully simple design style is the inspiration behind Organza. Ornamental shapes, chandeliers, trailing vines and stylised florals are found throughout the collection, evoking thoughts of a bygone era, but with a modern twist. In addition to these eloquently inspired design elements, emphasis has been placed on individuality to bring a personalised touch to any interior.



Organza is available in a range of colours and shades from monochromatic earthy tones to striking tangerines and sensual champagnes, making it perfect for a variety of interior concepts. v Wall Design Tel: 011 704 9780 Fax: 011 704 9790 E-mail:





Siddey’s Maintenance Insulation started off in 1998 by primarily focusing on hot and cold pipe insulation, roof insulation and soundproofing. While these were the major focus areas, the plan was to create a whole new umbrellaservice concept for maintenance solutions in South Africa.

Maintenance solutions

for domestic and commercial projects


n 1995, Siddey’s started with numerous small maintenance projects for clients but it was only in 1996 when focused divisions for maintenance services were established to maintain and construct in plumbing, electrical and renovations. Siddey’s started focusing on revamps and renovations in 1996 as there was an evergrowing demand for this in the market. Siddey’s services include both domestic and commercial renovations. Commercial renovations are based on all aspects of tenant installation and reinstatement such as the following: • Flooring (carpets, tiling, vinyl flooring) • Walling (painting, wallpaper) • Drywalling, ceilings • Airconditioning and ducting, soundproofing, roof insulation for energy conservation and hot and cold pipe insulation • Electrical (cabling, rewiring, routing, issuing of COCs, etc. and small maintenance) • Plumbing (installation of new bathrooms complete, maintenance thereof, unblocking of drains and general maintenance)

Reintroduction of KwaZulu-Natal branch Siddey’s Maintenance is after 2 years reintroducing their KwaZuluNatal branch with new and improved management and is teaming up with their sister company, Lag It All, for an effective duo in supply and installation of all insulation materials. The team will also continue plumbing and electrical services, but will be focused on renovations and insulation in the commercial as well as domestic sector. Lag It All, now also under new management, has a firm Level 3 BEE status with 51% black ownership.


The need for better maintenance The industry is faced with poorly maintained buildings which are rapidly deteriorating. Buildings that are not regularly maintained present energy problems, sewerage problems and, in many instances, water damage to the physical structures of the building due to leaking roofs. Most of these problems surface in the summer when rain volumes are high and the storm season breaks. This is when blocked sewers become a major concern, leaking roofs rapidly increase and electrical supplies fail if not well maintained or regularly renovated. The purpose of renovations and maintenance is to secure a hassle-free season transfer as the change of seasons is the biggest cause of maintenance faults. “The interior of the building is just as important as the exterior as small maintenance items left unattended create an embarrassing sight for visitors and make working conditions very difficult,” says Celest Bairos, marketing manager at Siddey’s. “Here at Siddey’s we make sure to guide our clients on potential hazards as well as existing hazards. When maintaining electrical items, for example, it is important to notify the clients of all hazards surrounding the current problem so that one can make decisions at an early stage. By including potential hazards, we help save on future expenses,” says Bairos.

Perfecting interior spaces When working on renovations, Siddey’s takes particular care to research the industry the client is in. “It’s important to know what clients in each industry require. Our team will then discuss a layout of the premises in order to advise on products for their interior spaces. Amongst other things, we discuss wall designs, their colour palettes and textures. The proposed type of roofing will be set out and explained, whether it is suspended ceilings, flush ceilings with specific lighting and/or bulkheads to enhance décor items, as well as light fixtures that will complement the end result,” says Bairos. v Siddey’s Maintenance Insulation Tel: 012 548 1973 / 1940 Fax: 012 548 1899 Email: Website:


SIDDEY’S MAINTENANCE INSULATION cc Your first choice in maintenance Established 1998 Tel: 012 548 1973 · Fax: 012 548 1899


s r a e Y

email: ·

Building Maintenance Electrical & Cocʼs Plumbing Tiʼs & Riʼs Steel work Hot & Cold Insulation (lagging) Scaffolding



Paint jobs that

beat mould and


in interior spaces


itchens and bathrooms, which are exposed to substantial and chronic moisture through the day, are susceptible to the potential growth of unsightly mould. The appropriate preparation and surface coatings, however, can eliminate the issue of unhygienic mould, says Dawid du Plessis, Technical Services Manager of Prominent Paints. “In particular, the bathroom will always have a higher humidity than anywhere else in the house. Similarly, the kitchen is exposed to vapours from appliances and activities which take place with the preparation and storage of foods. When constructing a new building, it is therefore necessary to select products that can deal with these environments,” says Du Plessis.

grease-free; wash down with ProGold cleaner diluted 1 part per 10 parts water so no dirt or grime remains. Pay particular attention to areas around stoves, kettles, fridges and microwaves, where cooking and other vapours can leave deposits,” he says.

Warning against eggshell enamel Noting that there is occasionally a temptation to use eggshell enamel in the bathroom and kitchen, Du Plessis steers away from this choice. “Eggshell enamel tends to yellow with the exposure in these rooms, where white is typically the favoured colour. The Prominent Ultra range provides low-odour coatings which will not fade or yellow but deliver a stain and moisture resistant sheen finish. “A two-coat application will result in a sound finish in either a sheen, matt or gloss which also delivers in terms of aesthetic appeal, with a life expectancy in excess of of ten years. “Be sure to adhere to the curing time specified on the data sheet to allow the finish to develop its optimum performance properties,” Du Plessis adds.

Calling in the experts for refurbishment projects Du Plessis says that during renovation projects of bathrooms, experts are often called when a homeowner has a problem with green or black mould and fungi growths. “Typically, colonies start off brown, move to black and then become green. These growths can be quite aggressive. The first question is, ‘Can it be scratched off?’ If so, the growth is on top of the coating; if not, it is within the paint itself.” If inside the paint, it is possible that an acrylic, which is permeable, was used to coat the wall. Remedying this means stripping the paint off and reapplying a more appropriate finish.

Precautions for paint jobs

The first question is, ‘Can it be scratched off?’ If so, the growth is on top of the coating; if not, it is within the paint itself.” Du Plessis explains that the painter, specifier or contractor should ensure the top coat of paint is a high-quality, low VOC water based product with mould and moisture resistant properties that is applied over a quality plaster primer. Prominent Ultrasheen is particularly well suited for this. Preparation of the surface is of paramount importance, which with new builds, tends to be straightforward, says Du Plessis. “The surface should be dry, non-friable (i.e. it should not crumble) and dust-free, before applying the plaster primer. Where a new coat is being applied to an existing kitchen, make sure it is


Surface mould needs to be removed chemically in order to ensure the mould does not grow again. Progold anti fungal wash is specifically formulated for this task. “Avoid eye contact with this treatment. Bear in mind you will be working on ceilings or high walls, so goggles and gloves are essential. Dilute 1 to 7 with water and apply from corner to corner with a cloth or sponge. Avoid using a spray bottle; this can cause accidental exposure.” Allow the product to react for 3 hours, before washing down with water and an abrasion pad. Look out for any soap residue or other grime before applying two coats of the desired Prominent Ultra range product. It is advised not to use the bathroom for at least 2 weeks but, noting that use of the bathroom can compromise the curing of the finish – but often can’t be avoided – Du Plessis says if you have to use it, keep it well ventilated for at least the first two weeks. v Prominent Paints Tel: 0861 PROMINENT Fax: 011 389 4654 Website:




Student architects



On 22 February 2011, the winners of the 2010 DesignHub Respond Renew Revitalise student architecture competition were announced at Saint-Gobain Construction Products Samrand Innovation Station.


his competition, now in its fifth year, saw students at participating South African universities recognised for their innovative and revolutionary approach to the rejuvenation of some of the country’s bestknown landmarks. Saint-Gobain Construction Products, global leaders in innovative construction solutions, was the headline sponsor of the competition. Students were tasked to investigate the profile of an existing multi-storey, multi-use building in their city, and to submit a proposal for its revitalisation, giving particular consideration to energy efficiency, sustainability, socio-political implications, and the original design. This competition was included in the syllabus for fourth-year architecture students at the University of the Free State, the University of Pretoria, the University of Cape Town and the Nelson Mandela Metropolitan University. External mentors volunteered to guide the students and give them insights into the practical issues of the architecture industry, while Saint-Gobain’s Technical and Specifications team offered on-tap advice about energy efficiency in the built environment. Temba Jauch from the University of Cape Town won R20 000 for making the best use of Gyproc, Isover and Weber products in his proposal to renew and revitalise the derelict Athlone Power Station. “Temba’s level of critical engagement – from macro to micro details – was creative at every level,” said Kim Fairbairn of Fairbairn Architecture. His mentor, Rodney Lloyd, was recognised for his guidance in working with Temba to address a particularly key area of concern in Cape Town. “Rod’s support of this project shows his keen awareness of the wide range of issues surrounding this site, and its importance as a node in the city of Cape Town,” Kim added. His prize was a Sony Vaio notebook computer, and a course at the Green Building Council of South Africa. The proposal submitted by Jankel Nieuwoudt from the University of Pretoria was acknowledged for the highest level of sustainability and compliance with energy efficiency standards described in SANS 204, winning R10 000. His proposal, entitled Serving the City: The Carlton as Mechanism


for Change in Urban Johannesburg, showed an innovative approach to all the issues affecting this troubled site in the heart of Johannesburg. Piet Vosloo of the University of Pretoria was named the best lecturer to participate in the Design Hub Respond Renew Revitalise competition. “His commitment to his students is clear, and it is very evident that his students are inspired by his leadership,” said Terence Shacklady of Empowered Spaces Architecture, one of the judges. His prize is a trip to the 2012 Design Indaba worth R15 000. The team from the architecture department at University of Pretoria was named the best University Architecture Department to participate in the competition, in recognition of the outstanding level of entries from all participating students. “Students emerging from the University of Pretoria’s architecture programme are going to be the most employable on the market, thanks to its commitment to the students and to architecture,” Kim said. A cheque for R60 000 was handed to the Department, in recognition of its excellence. “Each year, we are impressed by the standard of submissions to the competition,” said Lisa Reynolds, Saint-Gobain South Africa’s Technical & Specification Director. “This year, the students exceeded our expectations again, with carefully considered, innovative solutions that, were they to be implemented, would revitalise our cityscapes. They address very human needs in a revolutionary way, offering sustainable solutions that encourage the renewal of a vibrant inner city lifestyle.” “The standard of entries makes me particularly excited about the future of South African architecture, and how it will respond to the changing needs of our society,” she said. All the finalist proposals in the 2010 DesignHub Respond Renew Revitalise competition will be available on the competition’s website from 28 February 2011.The website address is v Saint-Gobain Construction Products Tel: 012 657 2800 Website:








Mr. Christian Lacroix

creates for SICIS

Between 12-17 April 2011 the collection of furniture designed by Mr. Christian Lacroix for SICIS The Art Mosaic Factory will be presented at the Salone Internazionale del Mobile di Milano fair, Italy, in an exquisite SICIS lifestyle display. From June 2011, it will be distributed worldwide in every SICIS showroom. SICIS is a legend in the world of mosaics. Revered for their exquisite Italian mosaics made in Ravenna, SICIS remains intent upon preserving its high standards of workmanship and seeking out cutting-edge technology.

Brocante II.

Elegant floral motifs are in vogue SICIS’s collaboration with Mr. Christian Lacroix highlights this. Hailed as a fashion-world genius, Lacroix has always endowed haute couture with his magical, whimsical charm and an extraordinary gift for colour, and all his fabled talents have been poured into this home furnishing collection. Just as his couture shows drama and flair, his furniture has furthered such elements with cunning radicalism. Mr. Christian Lacroix has been a recognised force in interior decoration for some time. Always in demand, he has produced illustrious hotels, cinemas and theatres. Excited by his relationship with SICIS, he acknowledges that, thanks to SICIS’s daring and energy, the mosaic is now accepted as a deeply contemporary and artistic embellishment. To enhance the magnificence of the mosaics – exuberantly colourful and jewel-like in appeal – he used them sparingly, opting for a light, subtle hand. Elegant as ever, his main goal was to create pieces that conjured up refinement and individuality. v SICIS E-mail: Website:


Another brilliant wall covering from BN International is being introduced to the Southern African market by its sole local agent, Wall Design. Known as Brocante II, the designs were inspired by elegant floral motifs from the past. The various layers in this wall covering create a remarkable 3D effect and give the collection a rich look. The metallic accents in the designs contribute to this aura of luxury. The result is chic and stylish, romantic and slightly retro, which is why Brocante II perfectly fits the predilection for warmth so characteristic of current interior design trends. Each design is constructed in various layers, using screen printing, embossing, foam and metallic accents, giving it a unique sense of three-dimensional depth and guarantee the collection’s luxurious look. Its vinyl top layer makes this wall covering by BN Wall coverings scratch and shock resistant and even washable. Brocante II will be available locally from Wall Design from 01 April 2011. Further information may be obtained by contacting the numbers shown below. v Wall Design Tel: 011 704 9780 Fax: 011 704 9790 E-mail:


Paint contractor



to the retail market


family business with roots in the paint industry for over half a century, Martin Vosloo Paints & Concepts is expanding its contracting business – and gradually entering the retail market. Now under the control of the third generation in the person of Jaco Vosloo, the company established a factory in Kya Sand six years ago and joined the SA Paint Manufacturing Association (SAPMA) two years ago. “Growing demand for our paint and contracting expertise means that we will have to move to a bigger facility near Krugersdorp soon. The increased capacity will enable us to expand our contracting arm – which has a full order book at the moment – and increase our developing entry into the retail market,” says Vosloo. “Retailing is a gradual venture for us, but one that we will continue to develop. Paint contracting remains our core business – 90% of it emanates from referrals and relationships built up with selected large developers,” continues Vosloo. The Martin Vosloo contracting team (there are now six painting teams) is currently involved in projects for the Blair Atholl

development, a large-scale golf estate near Lanseria. The company has also handled paint assignments for rugby legends Ray Mordt and Jake White, and former Governor of the South African Reserve Bank Chris Stals.

Matching colours for refurbishment projects Most main contractors often struggle with matching existing colour finishes for refurbishment projects. “Vosloo Paints & Concepts only makes decorative water-based paints – no oil-based or solvents – and, apart from our standard ranges, works closely with clients to help with colour blends and matching of existing finishes,” says Vosloo. “All our paints are manufactured in compliance with the local specifications, and we are busy gaining ISO certification to reaffirm that we provide top-quality products,” concludes Vosloo. v Martin Vosloo Paints & Concepts Tel: 011 708 3166 E-mail: Website:

Wallpaper Design Award 2011

In January, this innovative ceramic project won the Wallpaper Design Award 2011 in London, during the seventh edition of the Design Awards Party, an event organised to acclaim those objects and places that have characterised 2010 and made it a little more special, attracting the international jet set and the crème de la crème of the world of design and art. This prestigious award made annually was assigned to the new

Phenomenon collection manufactured by Mutina Ceramiche – a company that continues to reap international success – designed by the widely acclaimed Japanese designer Tokujin Yoshioka and presented at Cersaie 2011. “It is a great honour to receive this highly prestigious award together with Tokujin Yoshioka, the poet of design,” says Massimo Orsini, chairman of Mutina Ceramiche. “This important international award, which joins the numerous prizes won by the Déchirer collection designed by Patricia Urquiola, encourages us to continue down the road we have embarked upon, producing collections aimed at the world of design, in collaboration with some of the most authoritative names in the field.” This new award won by the

Phenomenon collection – also nominated for the EDIDA 2011 award – is the latest step on Mutina Ceramiche’s star-studded road to international acclaim. The Déchirer collection, designed by Patricia Urquiola and presented for the first time at Cersaie 2008, has been awarded the EDIDA prize (Milan 2009), the Best of Neocon prize (Chicago 2009), the Home Beautiful Product prize (Sydney 2009) and the Good Design prize (Chicago 2010); it is also among the products selected for the ADI Design Index, and has been nominated for the Compasso D’oro award, to be assigned in June 2011. v . Mutina Ceramiche E-mail: Website:



Superb new


for cement-based products

Cement has long been a crucial element in the building and construction of homes and structures. The revolution of using cement-based products within interior design has been gaining momentum since the 1970s, around the time that Cemcrete was established, and has since had a huge impact on designers and homemakers who are constantly seeking alternative and innovative ways to push boundaries to find personality in their design.


emcrete is proud to present the long-awaited opening of its new showroom. Situated in one of the creative hearts of Johannesburg, 227 Jan Smuts Avenue –it is easily accessible to designers. Boasting unique, stylish and contemporary finishes, Cemcrete’s Jan Smuts Avenue showroom offers abundant innovations to cater for every individual need. From the sleek sheen of the floors to the textured indulgence of the walls, the moment one walks through the front door there is unlimited inspiration to renovate, refurbish and build your dream project. Cemcrete offers a range of cement-based materials that can be used and manipulated to cover nearly any surface – walls, floors, swimming pools, roofs and so much more. Cemcrete’s products are available in a variety of colours to enhance the interior or exterior of any given space. They have been used in the international arena, and have become the playground for creative interior designers and architects. Proudly so, Cemcrete boasts the superior quality of all products that have proved to be timeless in their sophistication and longevity. This new showroom raises the bar in this field,


bringing individuals and corporations alike a charming taste and demonstration of just how adaptable these products can be. Here is a sneak preview into the ‘behind the scenes’ world of this new-age showroom, as well as the practical use of the relevant products and what you can expect. Displayed are images of finished and partly finished surfaces at the showroom. What is perhaps most appealing about Cemcrete products is their flexibility of use; interior and exterior design products are mostly interchangeable. The products set hard as rock, and are superbly low on maintenance. Visit this new showroom from the 31st of March and be enthused to create spaces that bring distinctive flair and versatile nuance to inhabiting surfaces. v Cemcrete Tel: 011 474 2415 Fax: 011 474 2416 E-mail: Website:




Corobrik appoints new directors Bertha Zwane, Corobrik Centre Manager at Lawley, and Nomvuyo Mkhefa, Assistant Factory Manager at Emalahleni, elected to represent the trustees of the Corobrik Staff Trust on the Corobrik board, attended their first board meeting in December 2010. Bertha Zwane, Manager at Lawley. Corobrik Managing Director Dirk Meyer comments that the “influence of these two women, both of whom have had many years of experience in the business, will add to the already wide pool of knowledge and experience available in the boardroom of Corobrik”. The company share trust, launched in 2008, placed 26% of the company shares in employees’ hands raising the control of the company in previously disadvantaged people’s hands to 51%, allowing the company to be fully participative in all aspects of the industry.  

Gradual return of consumer confidence expected for 2011

“We are of the view that in the year ahead we will experience a gradual upturn with the return of confidence, interests rates continuing to remain low and financial institutions slowly relaxing their lending criteria for home buyers in the residential segments,” says Meyer. During the last upturn Corobrik re-invested some

Corobrik Tel: 031 560 3111 Fax: 031 565 1532 Website:

CEO of Italtile Ltd dies in plane crash

Gianpaolo Ravazzotti, the CEO of the Italtile Ltd


R400-million in its manufacturing facilities to increase capacity, improve quality and improve manufacturing efficiencies. The company has also focused investment in new product development to provide a wider range of options for markets where they have not previously had wide exposure. “In the paving market clay pavers are continuing to gain market share, and have proven to be the material of choice for enhancing hard landscape environments. The introduction of new paver formats is adding impetus to our growth in the landscaping arena,” continues Meyer. “Corobrik has also benefited significantly from the introduction of new extrusion technology that has resulted in fuel savings for the drying and firing of products; this in the order of 20%. This technology innovation and the wider use of natural gas for the firing Nomvuyo Mkhefa, Assistant Factory Manager of our products, (natural gas nearly halves the carbon footprint of clay brick manufacture), defines the ‘greeness’ of our products in line with international best practice,” concludes Meyer.

It is with sadness and regret we report that Gianpaolo Ravazzotti, the CEO of the Italtile Ltd was one of nine people killed in an aeroplane crash in the Robberg Nature Reserve area near Plettenberg Bay in the Western Cape province on Tuesday, 8th February. The deceased include eight of his colleagues and business partners – Gia Celori of Italtile, Marilize Compion of Italtile, Sava Di Bella of Prima Bella Bathroom Accessories, Simon Hirschberg of the company Grainwave, Jody Jansen van Rensburg of CTM Alberton, Aletsia

Krause of Italtile, and the Italtile pilot Bronwyn Parsons and co-pilot Alison van Staden. The management and staff of Media in Africa would like to express their heartfelt sympathy and condolences to the chairman of the group, Mr Gianni Ravazzotti, his wife Annabel and their daughters, and Gianpaolo’s wife, Vanessa and their children, as well as the families of all of the deceased. It has been announced that Gianni Ravazzotti will once again take over direct leadership of the business as executive chairman.


Corobrik CEO reflects on prospects for 2011 innovation and the wider use of natural gas for the firing of our products (natural gas nearly halves the carbon footprint of clay brick manufacture) are driving Corobrik’s embodied energy reductions in line with international best practice for the technologies we employ.”

Dirk Meyer, Managing Director of Corobrik.

Dirk Meyer, Corobrik Managing Director, says all indications are that South Africa’s building industry is currently bumping along at the bottom of the economic recession and that the current low level of activity will continue for the first half of 2011. “The upturn will be determined by the return of confidence, interest rates continuing to remain low and, in the case of residential segments, the financial institutions relaxing their lending criteria for home buyers,” says Meyer. Following on last year’s highlights Some of Corobrik’s highlights of last year included clay bricks being specified for the major inner city redevelopment programmes and beachfront promenade upgrades and being used around the major stadiums in Durban, Cape Town and Port Elizabeth. “In the prevailing market, we have focused investment in plant and equipment able to enhance manufacturing flexibility, to provide products more tuned to the specific needs of our different target markets. In the paving market as an example our clay pavers have continued to gain market share largely through their hardwearing and enduring aesthetic qualities and we have a programme to expand our paver range with new shapes and textures to add impetus to that growth,” says Meyer. New Technologies “Corobrik has benefited significantly from its investment in new extrusion technology that has resulted in fuel savings and with that emissions reduction in the order of 20% for the drying and firing of products. This technology

Single most important element to ensure sustainability “Undoubtedly, the single most important element that will drive the sustainability of the clay brick industry is the

sustainability imperatives of the time,” continues Meyer. “It is well accepted that sustainability is inextricably linked to durability. The excellent thermal properties of clay brick, as demonstrated in the research, combined with the incombustibility and inertness of fired clay that ensure no release of volatile organic compounds or CFCs to impinge on the air quality and people’s health, elevate clay brick walling to an “environmentally friendly” status in a way that less durable new technology systems can but aspire to,” concludes Meyer.

Keeping a positive balance sheet in tough financial times

Peter du Trevou, Chairman of Corobrik.

substantive independent research by WSP Energy Africa and WSP Green by Design in South Africa that validates clay bricks as having the requisite thermal performance properties for supporting greatest thermal comfort and optimal energy utility for artificial heating and cooling of houses in South Africa’s unique climates. The results of the research have debunked the premise that the R-value (resistance) of a walling material to heat flows is the all-important thermal performance property for optimising thermal comfort,” says Meyer. “In lifecycle cost terms and lifecycle energy cost terms, the research shows that double-skin clay brick walling, with the appropriate levels of insulation depending on the climatic zone, is what new South African homes need to incorporate if we are to optimize our energy reductions and lower the country’s peak power demand loads, thereby reducing the stress on both energy production and the fiscus of South Africa. These findings are set to provide a unique platform for the clay brick industry to reinvent clay brick in the context of the

Corobrik has ridden through the tough economic times. “Prudent financial management, a black economic empowerment (BEE) deal that has not indebted the staff and sound business principles have bolstered Corobrik’s bottom line,” says Chairman Peter du Trevou. “This was despite the global economic crisis that plunged South Africa into recession. In comparative terms Corobrik had done well, selling over 800-million bricks in the financial year to June 2010. To give perspective, the entire UK industry sold 200-million bricks less than Corobrik in the same period,” continues du Trevou. “The sound balance sheet and conservative financial management had meant the company was not cash-strapped during the recession as happened to other industry players. Shareholders were reinvesting capital into the business, to increase production flexibility, provide new products for Corobrik to better address changing market needs and prepare the business for the better times that are coming,” says Du Trevou.

Corobrik Tel: 031 560 3111 Fax: 031 565 1532 Website:



Whatever happened to Ground Zero? An architect’s story. Leon Diamond, a retired architect from Gauteng and avid Walls & Roofs reader, wrote us a letter in January after reading our feature article, “Ground Zero: Designing and Building the Freedom Tower” in Journal 1.11. “What aroused my interest was your well-presented article on Ground Zero – The World Trade Centre. It is articles like these that raise your magazine onto a higher level,” writes Diamond. Diamond wrote this article as a companion piece to the Walls & Roofs feature. We greatly appreciate input from design professionals in the local industry and we would like to give thanks and acknowledgement to Leon Diamond for this article.

$900m and it was complete on April 4th 1973. On any given day, 50 000 people worked in the Twin Towers. The building was no stranger to controversy. On February 13th 1975, a fire broke out and on February 26th 1993 an unsuccessful attempt was made to bomb its foundations. The terrorist attack of 9/11, however, succeeded in bringing it down to the ground.

“GROUND ZERO – AN ARCHITECT’S LAMENT” On September 11th 2001, at 8:46am, a highjacked American Airlines jet crashed into the North Tower of the World Trade Centre in New York. At 9:03 am, a second jet crashed into the South Tower. Both towers collapsed into heaps of rubble. In all, 2 752 lives were lost. It was the single largest terrorist attack of all time and left a gaping hole in the city’s heart. The site, named “Ground Zero”, is owned by The Port Authority of New York and New Jersey. A body called The Lower Manhattan Development Corporation (LMDC) was charged by the Port Authority with the mammoth responsibility of redeveloping the site, which at the time was leased to a Mr. Larry Silverstein. The experienced and charismatic Mr. Silverstein, who owned the 99-year lease on the site, had firm ideas about the development. At the same time, there were the viewpoints to be taken into account of other interested parties, such as developers, architects, politicians, insurers, community residents, relatives of 9/11 victims and multiple, competing government entities. To say that the redevelopment was a straightforward task would be a gross misstatement. Attempts to simplify matters by buying out Silverstein came to nothing. It is of note that construction of the original World Trade Centre began on August 5th 1966. Final costs came to


Questions were immediately raised about the building’s engineering, but as the Port Authority was a bi-state agency, the Towers had been exempt from New York building codes. It was originally envisaged that the rebuilding project would be composed of Office Blocks, a Memorial, a Cultural Centre and Residences. After much prevarication, in the autumn of 2002 the LMDC decided to invite concept designs for the site in Lower Manhattan. Seven teams of prominent architects were asked to come up with solutions regarding such issues as where to put a Memorial to the departed, what to do with the skyline and

how to connect downtown with the rest of the city. Most of the invited architects responded enthusiastically with elaborate plans and presentations. Before the site could be developed, there was the challenge posed by the century-old public transit system, which ran below the site. The schemes of the celebrity architects were well publicised. In the end, the design submitted by Studio Daniel Libeskind was chosen by the Port Authority as the winning submission. Libeskind was the only architect with the guts to venture down into the pit among the foundations of the twin towers. It was there, looking up at the city above him, that he had the inspiration for his master plan. His design called for a 1776 foot (541m) high sculptured tower of blue-tinted glass plus subsidiary smaller towers. The main tower, to be called “The Freedom Tower”, would be surmounted by a towering 276 foot high spire designed to echo features of the Statue of Liberty in New York harbour. The proposed height of 1776 feet marks a key date in U.S. history, namely the Year of Independence. The main tower, with its spire, would then become the world’s tallest building – so bringing the mantle of the world’s tallest building back to New York. In spite of Libeskind being declared the winner, Silverstein insisted that his own architect, David Childs of Skidmore, Owings and Merrill, be appointed to design the Freedom Tower. It must be remembered that Silverstein held plenty of clout. Not only did he hold the lease over the site, but was also the beneficiary of several billion dollars of insurance moneys, that would most likely provide most of the funds for the project. Silverstein seemed to be holding all the cards. However, Libeskind, who grew up in the Bronx, turned out to know more than a little about street fighting in New York. He hired a tough lawyer, Edward Hayes, who made it perfectly clear to Silverstein that his client was prepared to walk off the site, which would have seriously embarrassed the LMDC, who organised the competition. The outcome, after hours of argument,


was a compromise whereby Childs and Libeskind agreed to collaborate as ‘joint master planners’, which meant they would jointly be in charge of all design. This arrangement brought with it further complications regarding whose overall concept would be followed. Both parties had done their own conceptualising and neither seemed prepared to budge. The occasional public display of unity for the media could not hide the acrimonious battles taking place between Libeskind and Childs. In the midst of all the infighting, construction of the main tower was due to begin in 2006, with completion by 2010. There is not a single part of the project that is uncontested., Libeskind remarked.

Meanwhile the architects for the subsidiary tower buildings were announced as follows: • WTC Tower 2 - Foster and Partners • WTC Tower 3 - Jean Nouvelle of Atelier Jean Nouvelle • WTC Tower 4 - Fumihiko Maki and Associates, Tokyo • WTC Memorial Museum - Davis Brody of the US In a surprise announcement, the New York Police Department threw a further

wrench into the works by advising that the 1776-foot main tower, where sited, was vulnerable to attack by truck bombs. There was no doubt the centerpiece Freedom Tower would have to be moved, which created further delays for the architects. Giles Hewitt, a New York writer, has gone on record as saying that since his master plan was chosen from an international field in 2003, Libeskind was forced to watch as major elements of his blueprint have been radically modified or taken out of his hands. To a gifted architect this was heart-breaking stuff. Even Donald Trump joined the fray by voicing his strong opposition to the Freedom Tower proposals. He favoured a return to the original, outdated TwinTowers concept – with certain revisions. Although Libeskind was selected by the Port Authority and the LMDC to design an overall site plan, Silverman was still drafting his own plans with Skidmore, Owings and Merrill. As one of the projects most public faces, Libeskind bore the brunt of much of the criticism over infighting and delays. The role of scapegoat was not one the 60-year old Polish-born Libeskind, a naturalised U.S. citizen, appreciated.

It is now 7 years since the 11th September attack and not unsurprisingly progress is painfully slow. The blame for this has been assigned to a shifting cast of colourful characters. Some found fault with Mayor Michael R Bloomberg for taking a back seat. Others found fault with the Port Authority for viewing the present scarred site as a source of revenue. (The site is presently a major tourist attraction.) Leaseholder Silverstein has been described as mercenary. However, many maintain that the lion’s share of the criticism should go to Governor Pataki for his erratic leadership and lack of vision. In amongst all the recriminations and discord, sight must not be lost of the ultimate goal which is to build the tallest building in the world, the most expensive commuter rail centre, the most costly Memorial complex and the most technically advanced ‘vehicle security centre’. Ground Zero will not be built as Libeskind wished it to be. But although he concedes that he didn’t get his own way entirely, he remains upbeat about his role as master planner. And with fees of $22,5m he can always console himself with pleasant walks to the bank.

Norcros SA appoints new brand manager In January, Norcros SA announced the appointment of Gela Ohl as its new brand manager. Ohl joins Norcros SA after several years in the retail and floor industries, bringing with her a wealth of experience that will stand her in good stead while she looks after the Gela Ohl, brand manager Norcros SA Norcros SA brand and two of its divisions including adhesive manufacturer TAL and industrial adhesive manufacturer Nortec. Of German descent, Ohl matriculated at West Ridge High School in Roodepoort before obtaining her National Diploma in Public Relations and a National Higher Diploma in Management Practice from Wits Technikon. After eight years with the Russells furniture group, Ohl joined distributor Pioneer Flooring in 1998 as marketing executive where she developed a passion for outstanding service levels which, according to her, are crucial in this sector. At Pioneer she created and marketed dealer-owned brands and developed the business with the large retailers such as House & Home and Builders Warehouse. She received the managing director’s award in 2000.

In 2008, Ohl moved to Warmup, a manufacturer of underfloor heating systems, as marketing manager and was later transferred to the holding company, Heatsolve, in Ireland where she focused on creating floor heating brands for the Irish and Canadian markets. The novelty of living abroad soon wore off and, feeling homesick, she returned to South Africa to join Norcros SA. Commenting on the challenges the industry is facing, Ohl says: “Getting the right balance between traditional marketing activities and keeping pace with social media changes without losing sight of the fundamentals. Also, the demand for greener, environmentally friendly products is growing. Consumers want to do good and we are finding that consideration for the environment features as a strong factor in their decision making when purchasing building materials and finishes.” Ohl says that opportunities for growth can be found in the innovation of green building products, producing consumerfriendly DIY retail products and developing markets in Africa. Norcros SA Tel: 011 506 9700 Website:



UCT Concrete research unit receives full accreditation The University of Cape Town’s Concrete Materials and Structural Integrity Research Prof Mark Alexander, Head Unit (CoMSIRU) of the Department of Civil has been given full Engineering at UCT. accreditation as a University Research Unit. This accreditation implies that the group meets the required criteria for research, including a good track record of research productivity, stable research leadership, financial soundness, proper management, and clear research goals and objectives for the future.  The research group has been in existence for almost two decades and its growth in recent years has prompted the leaders of the group, namely Prof Mark Alexander, head of the Department of Civil Engineering at UCT; Dr Pilate Moyo, Associate Professor in the Department; and Dr Hans Beushausen, lecturer in the UCT Department of Civil Engineering, to apply for Research Unit accreditation.  Representatives from the concrete industry, such as Bryan Perrie, managing director of the Cement & Concrete Institute

(C&CI), as well as other academic institutions celebrated the full establishment of CoMSIRU at a dinner in Cape Town in January 2011. During the dinner, CoMSIRU statistics were briefly reviewed which showed that the group had grown to a cohort of about 20 full-time postgraduate students (Masters and Doctoral), as well as research, administrative and laboratory staff. Strong interest in the working of the unit is also being expressed by future postgraduate students. Prof Alexander expressed thanks to the cement industry, which has for years funded the concrete research operation at UCT, and referred to the outstanding quality of the graduates being produced. “Valuable research knowledge is being created which is fed back into concrete practice in South Africa, enabling CoMSIRU to interact vigorously on the international scene,” said Alexander. Cement and Concrete Institute Tel: 011 315 0500 E-mail: Website:

C&CI is in the process of updating and redesigning its website,

New website includes sustainability link Hanlie Turner, marketing manager of the Cement & Concrete Institute (C&CI), says the first phase of the redesigning and updating of its website ( za) is progressing, and it will be subject to regular future updates. “The website has a sustainability link already to reinforce the industry’s commitment to environmental preservation and sustainability,” she says. “It also deals in depth with C&CI’s four marketing focal areas: Architectural Concrete, Concrete in Human Settlements, Concrete Roads and Paving, and Structural Concrete,” Turner adds. Cement and Concrete Institute Tel: 011 315 0500 E-mail: Website:

Energy Efficiency Industry Appointments Sustainable growth for a global group of customers For 85 years, Bayferrox iron oxides manufactured by Lanxess at its Krefeld-Uerdingen site in Germany have been adding colour to building projects around the world. Since production started back in 1926, over 12 million metric tonnes of these highquality colour pigments have left the Lanxess plant on Germany’s River Rhine, which is the biggest plant of its kind in the world. This makes Lanxess one of the world’s largest manufacturers of these pigments, and mounting global demand will necessitate further capital expenditures at all production sites. The main beneficiaries of this are the construction industry and the


surface coatings segment, which are among the biggest customers for these pigments. “For these industries, our pigments are absolutely indispensable because of their lightfastness, weather stability, chemical resistance and environmental friendliness,” says Jörg Hellwig, head of the Inorganic Pigments business unit. “The product range now contains well over 100 different colour shades.” Lanxess (Pty) Ltd Tel: 011 457 4019 Fax: 011 457 4008 Email: Internet:

Danielle Badenhorst has been appointed as Communications and Administration Manager of the Southern African Association for Energy Efficiency (SAEE). Edith Kikonyogo has been elected as Chairperson of the Mining and Industrial Energy Optimization (MIEO) Executive Committee for the 2011/2012 term- Edith is also Consulting Services Manager at ABB. The MIEO is a chapter of the Southern Danielle Badenhorst African Association for Energy Efficiency (SAEE).

Edith Kikonyogo

The Southern African Association for Energy Efficiency Tel: 041 367 1041 Cell: 084 622 4770 Email: Website:


Western Cape industry forecast


n the first week of February 2011, the Master Builders Association of the Western Cape (MBAWC) – a registered trade association for employers in the building industry – hosted a seminar to discuss Developing a More Stable Construction Industry in the Western Cape Province. According to MBAWC President Allen Bodill, “We called together this forum to pin down some of the reasons for the current depressed state of the industry, and to explore ways in which the various stakeholders could collaborate in creating a more stable environment in the building industry in our region.” Speakers from a variety of sectors shared their perspectives on the crisis with the gathering of contractors, architects, quantity surveyors, civil and structural engineers, industry suppliers, skills training providers, developers, academics, media, trade union members and local government representatives. Dr Johan Snyman, Director of Medium Term Forecasting Associates, explained that the South African construction industry as a whole is cyclical in nature. He said, “The bad news is that we are in the downswing of the current recession but the good news is that these cycles do exist and will recur and that we will experience a good period in the future.” Going on the most recent figures from the South African Reserve Bank concerning the level of investment in residential buildings, he warned that

with investment being modest in the residential sector, declining in the nonresidential sector and dropping massively in the total construction works sector, combined with lower tender prices, he saw tough times ahead for Western Cape contractors.      Elsie Snyman of Industry Insight narrowed the focus of her discussion to industry trends in the Western Cape.  She said that the Western Cape construction industry has to adapt and change to where the focus of investment lies and that the building industry, in particular, is very sensitive and vulnerable to the needs that are driving private sector investment as well factors that influence the confidence levels and decisionmaking behind these investments. She also pointed out that, according to recent construction projects awarded, local government is a critical client of the industry, and discussion was held on this aspect. In a similar vein, Michael Bagraim of the Cape Chamber of Commerce challenged the industry to stand together and form a lobbyist group to put pressure on government instead of waiting for them to spend money. He said there must be a solution somewhere between the need for housing and the building industry’s need for work. Bagraim continued that it should fall to this industry to help the government to spend that money which, at present, it is struggling to use. This was echoed by Leon Cohen, MD of the Rabie Property Development Group, who said, “We can’t go with statistics and negativity... [Rather] we have to

be positive, we have to be creative, we have to be different and we have to be innovative. We can’t just complain, we’ve got to go to work and make things happen. While it won’t be the same turnover, there is always scope for those that are better than others.” He also expressed the need for government to boost confidence in order to drive the industry. Speaking from the perspective of local government, Hector Elliot, on behalf of the Provincial Minister of Public Works, said that the Department of Transport & Public Works is fully committed to the construction industry. “Our support takes two forms... Firstly, we invest in infrastructure, including building, maintaining, repairing and enhancing roads, hospitals, schools and other public buildings. Secondly, we invest in people, building and retaining the skills we need in the Province to drive the industry and the economy as a whole.” He said that despite budgetary cuts by the National Government, the Department would not decrease its level of investment in infrastructure-related projects in the near future and that in fact it would be increasing its expenditure by 6-7% over the next three financial years. He also spoke of stimulating development through his soon-to-belaunched Regeneration Programme which aims to transform both Cape Town and the Province. As a result it could potentially attract major business investments, which would in turn have a positive impact on the construction industry.

School will save R50 000 in maintenance costs thanks to clay bricks SANS Educare, a learning facility in Mfuleni in the Western Cape has been operating since 2005. In March 2010, SASDI (South African Sustainable Development Initiative) approached Corobrik to be a donor for the school’s transformation from an informal wooden cabin to a solid brick structure. Corobrik donated 25 000 Cape Blend Travertine face bricks to the impoverished school, giving it a new lease on life. “The donation of maintenance-free face bricks will save the school R50 000 per year permitting the school’s annual maintenance grant to be invested in purchasing crucial learning material to improve the quality of education,” says Christie van Niekerk, manager of Corobrik Western Cape. Kissmea Adams of SASDI says, “Corobrik was truly amazing

with their support throughout the project. Mfuleni is an impoverished community and cannot sustain the centre on its own. The generosity shown by Corobrik has given the community a sense of pride while providing a safe haven for children for years to come,” says Adams. “We were glad to have assisted Sans Educare in constructing a more comfortable environment for children to learn in.  The structure is particularly important in this community as it symbolises hope for a better future too,” concludes Van Niekerk. Corobrik Tel: 031 560 3111 Fax: 031 565 1532 Website:



Passionate about paint and the environment Harlequin Paints was started in 1999 by three people – a chemist, a designer and a paint applicator – who used a special blend of technical and management skills to produce a pioneering range of solventfree paints. Today Cape Town-based Harlequin – which has recently joined the SA Paint Manufacturing Association (SAPMA) – manufactures only environment-friendly, solvent-free, water-based products. The environmental aspects of its product range are carefully monitored, but Harlequin Paint’s Tony Onwood says customers and specifiers should be aware of some misconceptions – and largely unknown facts – about paint. “It is not generally known that waterbased paints contain solvents with VOCs (volatile organic compounds). So consumers should be careful of paint brands proclaiming to have ‘low odour’ as these may still contain a high level of VOCs. They may not have a noticeable scent but are still hazardous,” he says. “Given that water-based paint contains VOC, the Environmental Protection Agency has decreed that for a paint to be classed as Minimal VOC it should contain less than 0,3 grams VOC per litre. Harlequin Paints is one of very few companies in South Africa that conforms to these standards – both in our

paint range and certain products in our varnish range. “Paint is grouped into different VOC categories: 0 to 2,99 grams per litre (Minimal) and 3 to 7,99 grams per litre (Low). Our premium paint range has been independently verified as being Minimal VOC, and is thus classified as solvent-free, but it should be noted that white will have a lower VOC level than colour tinted paint because the tints used contain glycols,” he says. “A small amount of colour tint – say the amount needed to produce a pastel colour – will not significantly raise the overall VOC level, but the darker the shade, the higher the level of solvents,” Onwood explains. “The Green Building Council of South Africa stipulates that a finished paint

colour must contain no more than a maximum of 16 grams VOC per litre to conform to the Green Star building rating. The VOC content of paint can be shown as grams per litre (GPL) or by percentage, and people should be aware that 3% is not the same as 3 grams per litre – in fact the percentage equates to a much higher GPL ratio,” he adds. “This is an important aspect of paint, because VOC content is the major contributing factor to ozone, a common air pollutant that constitutes a health hazard,” he says. “Regarding ozone, the Harlequin product range also conforms to Rule 43 of the European Protection Agency, which stipulates a maximum level of 15 ppm of CMIT (chloromethylisothiazolinone) per litre of paint,” says Onwood. He says Harlequin Paints became the first “carbon-neutral” paint plant in South Africa after independent assessment of its factory’s carbon emissions in 2008. For more information about VOC or availability of products call Tony at Harlequin paints Choose your colour….. it will always be GREEN Harlequin paints Tel: 021 510 7252 or 0860100626 E-mail: Website:

FNB Quartely Residential Property Review for February The latest FNB Quarterly Housing Review presented by property strategist John Loos focuses on the key issue of housing affordability, and why residential demand has not grown significantly despite a very significant improvement in the two “traditional” calculations of affordability that are used. These measures are the average house price/average remuneration ratio and the instalment value on a 100% loan on an average-priced house/average remuneration ratio. Both of the indices reflecting these ratios have fallen (improved) dramatically since their peaks in 2007/8 – the price/average remuneration ratio by -22% and the instalment/average remuneration ratio by -40,4%, with interest rates providing additional downward impetus for the latter ratio. However, these dramatically improved trends run contradictory to the FNB Estate Agent Survey results where an increasing percentage of agents (57% by the 4th quarter of 2010) are stating that income levels have got “far behind home price levels”. Despite the estate agent survey question requiring only a


subjective and qualitative answer, Loos feels that their answer is far closer to the mark than calculations using average price and average remuneration. This is in part because of the major decline in formal sector employment from 2008 to early 2010, according to the SARB as much as -15,4% over the period. Therefore, the average income earner may be fine, but formal income earners are significantly fewer in number compared with a few years ago. However, the issue is more complex than that, because the question has arisen as to why the likes of new motor vehicle sales growth far outstrips new home sales (and thus new residential building activity growth). The motor vehicle sector operates in the same economy as the home market, and is also affected by issues such as recession and job loss. But new motor vehicle sales growth was robust through 2010 to early 2011 (as were retail sales), while the also interestrate-driven new housing demand (and thus building activity) remains virtually in freefall.


New Free State branch for a.b.e and Chryso

The new a.b.e./Chryso branch in Bloemfontein.

Following the acquisition of a.b.e. Construction Chemicals by Chryso Southern Africa late last year, the two companies have now combined forces to open a new branch in Bloemfontein, Free State, which is more than double the size of the previous a.b.e. operations in the provincial capital, with substantially increased stockholding and warehousing space. Armand van Vuuren, Chryso SA’s inland commercial manager, says “Chryso SA products have always been available in the Free State but the new enlarged operations will now mean that our Free State, Northern Cape and Lesotho customers will have more immediate and direct access to the full Chryso product range, and that there will also be increased stockholding space for a.b.e. products,” Van Vuuren explained. Chryso SA has already provided training on its own products for a.b.e.’s Bloemfontein staff, with Van Vuuren and other top technical

CEO comments on Competition Commission issues Aveng Group CEO Roger Jardine hosted a conference call on 03 February 2011 to update local and international investors on the company’s trading conditions and Competition Commission matters. He says the steel environment continued to affect the company’s results to 31 December 2010 and, while infrastructure spend in South Africa has slowed down, he was confident that public investment in infrastructure will return in the medium term. Commenting on the Competition Commission’s investigation into the construction sector, he said, “It is deeply concerning that such practices exist in the construction industry. It is clear that these pervasive practices, which have also been uncovered in other sectors in corporate South Africa, have to be rooted out.” Jardine adds, “The Aveng Group will continue to cooperate with the Competition Commission as it has done since 2008. We are doing everything we can to detect past practices through internal investigations to ensure that anti-competitive behaviour of any size is prevented and to take the industry forward on a new footing. The measures that we have in place include a compliance review, immunity and tip-off hotlines as well as ensuring that we have thoroughly trained staff on Competition Law.” Highlighting the importance of the private sector in eradicating anti-competitive behaviour, Jardine said: “Going forward, institutional memory is a very important weapon to combat this anti-competitive behaviour. In one matter affecting us, only

staff based at Chryso head office in Jet Park available to provide more input if required. “Chryso SA and a.b.e. regard the Free State, Northern Cape and Lesotho as major trading areas with enormous potential for growth. Our new combined operations in Bloemfontein have been established to cope with increasing future demand,” Van Vuuren added. The new branch, which started trading in February 2011, is situated at 86 Fritz Stockenström Street in New East End, Bloemfontein. a.b.e. Construction Chemicals Tel: 051 432 0036 E-mail: Website:

three of nine people implicated are still with the company. It is important that the regulators work with the new generation of industry executives in a collaborative manner to uncover anticompetitive behaviour in all sectors of the economy.” “It is my view that the private sector must take a lead in building an ethos of trust and transparency in our young democracy if it is to be sustainable. Elected politicians and civil servants are not the only people that are responsible for upholding values of trust and integrity in our society. We need to ensure that, as the private sector, we break the culture of blaming others for corrupt practices.” Jardine concludes, “Aveng will work with the government, the Competition Commission and with civil society to improve business practices so that our society as a whole can be strengthened. The construction industry is a very important sector in the South African economy, employing an estimated 400 000 people. The behaviour of senior executives should not detract from the sacrifices and commitment of the hundreds of thousands of workers in this country who often put their lives on the line to deliver good roads, stadia and other infrastructure for all of us.” The Aveng Group Tel: 011 779 2800 E-mail: Website:


tech savvy

First projects in Germany fitted with back-ventilated curtain façade


1950s apartment house and a new office building in Germany now show how the back-ventilated curtain façade with insulation panels made of BASF’s Neopor® EPS (expandable polystyrene) can be used in renovation and new buildings. The two building projects were fitted with the patented swisspor Lambda Vento façade system which was produced by Swiss insulation material manufacturer swisspor and approved by the Deutsches Institut für Bautechnik, Germany. The system offers very good thermal insulation (λR = 0.032 W/m*K) and considerable design freedom for individual, high-quality and, at the same time, weather-resistant façades. The façade of the 1950s three-storey apartment house with twelve apartments was lined with gray fibre cement panels. The multi-layer outer wall construction – consisting of insulation panels, wooden substructure with an air gap and external cladding – is impervious to moisture and therefore dimensionally stable, resistant to ageing and rot-proof. The insulation panels

made of Neopor have a tongue and groove all the way round, and with the spacer bolts, that are placed at regular points and that fix the substructure, form a construction that is virtually free of thermal bridges. The second project, which is a new office building for the Evangelisches Kirchenamt Mitteldeutschland, involves rebuilding and extending parts of the old university in the old town centre. The new building will have a façade with fibre cement panels that is compact and space-saving, which is a considerable advantage considering the narrow streets that offer very little room for building in the area. The insulation panels, which are approved at thicknesses of up to 200 mm, are easy to cut without dust or waste. They are easily secured to the substructure with insulation material holders known as insulation anchors and so do not have to be glued. This means that the panels can be mounted virtually all year round regardless of weather conditions. The façade can be completely dismantled if necessary and all components can be reused or recycled. BASF Holdings South Africa (Pty) Ltd. Tel: 011 203 2422 Fax 011 203 2430 E-mail: Website: For more information, visit and, to which full thanks and acknowledgement are given. v


Walls & Roofs Journal 2'11  

Walls & Roofs Jnl 2'11