Page 1

Page 2

Page 3

Construction InsightFebruary/March2014 6 New Home for Cell C 9 Secunda Mall 11 Auas Valley is being

transformed into a modern lifestyle destination

15 Radisson Park Inn Hotel Newlands – set to open in 2014

17 Standard bank-Cape Town Redevelopment

19 Economic Growth of Lephalale Limpopo Province

22 Group Five Headquarters merges in the Waterfalls Business Estate Development

26 The Grove Mall of Namibia: a World Class Mall

28 Benmore Capital Hill - Probuild Construction

29 De Aar and Konkoonsies Solar Plant Projects assist in meeting the ever increasing demand of electricity to the nation

33 PV power plant achieves ‘self build’ status from Eskom

34 Reutech and Soitec Partner in Touwsrivier Solar Energy Project

35 New Soitec’s CPV Plant at Touwsriver

38 Jeffreys Bay Wind Farm Erects Wind Turbines

40 The 75 MW PV Plant Kalkbult 46 Sere Wind Farm, a Transformational Catalyst

48 Acid Mine Drainage; a Nightmare in the Mining Industry

50 Brand Engineering implements electrical installations for

Construction Insight Magazine


51 S.A’s first tall green star building in Cape Town - Portside

is Published by

Development Editor – Paul Simbeye Advertisement & Sales – Michael Sichinga, Caroline Moonga, Aaron Mule, Patrice Fraser, Nathan Gordon Administration & Subscription – Ireen Chundu Project Co-ordinator – Alick Sichinga Design & Layout –

Page 4

53 Solutions for Elevating –

90 Grayston Development

54 ABSA Towers North Page 5

New Home for Cell C G

roup 5 Construction, along with their contractors, was hard at work constructing the new magnificent Cell C head offices. Cell phone operator Cell C campus is situated between the busy Buccleuch Interchange and the Allandale off-ramp on the N1 between Johannesburg and

Midrand. Found at the Waterfall Business Estate – the most ambitious commercial development of its kind being undertaken in South Africa at present, Cell C’s 46 000 square metre building has a customer walk-in

Page 6

Page 7

INVO STAHLBAU CC The current upgrade includes the refurbishment of the mall’s popular stores such as Pick n Pay, who will soon occupy their much larger warehouse and the structure to the new parking deck, will be near complete at the end of March to make 380 more parking bays available. Also, the Agra Retail branch, Safari Den and Auas Pharmacy will be redesigned for a top class customer experience with more space and a wider product range. Newcomers to the mall will include Steers, Debonairs, Fish Aways, Fresh ‘n Wild restaurant, the Sushi bar, Pep Home, Mareez Jeweler, Silver Berry, Pet Boutique, Bugatti restaurant, an optometrist, ATMs of the major banks and a car wash.

Page 12

The second phase will include the addition of another 10,000 square metre of retail space, boosting prime shopping area from the current 12,000 square metres to a total of 22,000 square metres. The new tenant mix will include a great variety of new shops, such as Steers, Debonairs, Fish Away, Fresh & Wild, Pep Home (the first in Namibia), Silverberry, La Mareez, Happy Shop, Colour Fashions, Classic Pet Boutique, SA Electronics, a Sushi restaurant, and a car wash besides the existing and remaining brands such as Pick n Pay, Nictus, Agra, Looks Hair Design, Auas Vet Med, Cash King, Bank Windhoek and Safari Den. An extended parking area will provide ample parking, ensuring

Tel: +264 61 261 641 Fax: +264 61 216 374 Cell: 081 124 0926 e-mail: P O Box 30013 WINDHOEK NAMIBIA

Page 13

swift and convenient access for shoppers, customers and tenants alike. The N$320-million development will offer a modern topclass retail environment that will easily find its place amongst Windhoek’s retail sector, which is expanding substantially over the next few years. The upgrade and extension will secure and further grow market share due to a new contemporary design that offers more choice and convenience.

Agra Co-operative was founded in 1980 when it took over the assets and liabilities of the South African Cooperative BKB (BoereKooperatiefBeperk). From very humble beginnings with less than 200 members and an annual turnover of N$80 million it has grown to an organization employing almost 600 people, with a turnover of N$ 1.8 billion, a shareholder base of 4 600 and a net profit after taxation of N$31 million for 2012. Agra converted to a public company on 1 February 2013.

Agra the owners of Auas Valley Centre is a role player in the agriculture industry in Namibia. Being also well established in the retail business, Agra has currently 18 retail branches countrywide, a wholesale division, a specialised arms, ammunition, outdoors and camping outlet (under the Safari Den brand), livestock agency services, and a special division providing consulting and advisory professional services to farmers (ProVision).

Auas Valley Shopping Mall is the largest of the Agra property portfolio. Due to the very satisfactory growth of Agra’s operations in all divisions, it has become necessary to enlarge and upgrade most of its facilities, as most of its branches have outgrown their current available space. This means that major investments have already been done and are being done to ensure that their customer service and customer satisfaction is maintained and improved.

Willem Steenkaamp: Managing Director Tel: +264 61 238723 • Fax: +264 61 223296 Mail:

Radisson Park Inn Hotel Newlands – set to open in 2014 N

ewlands will soon welcome the new 122 room Park Inn Hotel, the new R150million development is being built on the former premises of the Federation of South Africa (Deafsa) on the corner of Hemlock and Thicket Roads in Newlands. The project is a joint venture between DeafSA, Meridian Property Holdings, a cape town based developer and Industrial Development Corporation. Deafsa represents some 800 000 hearing impaired members countrywide, and views the development as a key broadbased empowerment initiative that will create income generating, skills transfer and employment opportunities for its members. Park Inn Newlands is Rezidor’s second Park Inn by Radisson hotel in Cape Town. The group also has two Radisson Blu hotels in Cape Town – one in operation, the other under development.

Page 14

The new Park Inn by Radisson Cape Town Newlands will be the first internationally branded hotel in Claremont and Newlands. Besides 122 comfortable guest rooms it will have a club lounge, a business lounge, the RBG Restaurant and Bar, a breakfast restaurant, a kiosk and help desk, a gym, multipurpose meeting and function facilities, an outdoor terrace with a sculpture garden and an outdoor swimming pool, new offices and training facilities for DeafSA. The developers have constructed an extra basement of 126 parking bays which has been sold on a sectional title basis to Growth Point Properties. The hotel is close to several sport stadiums and institutions, such as the Newlands Cricket Ground, Newlands Rugby Stadium, South African Rugby Head Quarters and the Sports Science institute of South Africa. The University of South Africa is also only a short distance away. Park Inn Hotel is scheduled to be completed in the first quarter of 2014.

Page 15

Standard bank-Cape Town Redevelopment


alued at R498 million, the Standard Bank Centre is the collective name of the two towers on the corner of Hertzog Boulevard and Heerengracht Street in the Cape Town city centre. It houses the offices of corporate giants Standard Bank and Telkom. The towers standing in a prominent position in terms of exposure and their proximity to public transport and other amenities have become markedly dated in comparison to many of their neighbours that have been the target of redevelopment schemes. The likes of Media City, The Park Inn and the Grand Parade Investments head office are but some of the most recent projects that have breathed new life into aged structures.

Page 16

However, Standard Bank Centre is finally in the midst of a redevelopment that will arguably become one of the most significant redevelopment projects undertaken in the city to date due to the sheer scale of the premises. The taller of the two towers is one of the highest in the immediate area, enjoying sweeping views of the CBD and harbour area. Thus any changes to its exterior have the potential to significantly modernise the city’s skyline. The first phase of construction comprises the addition of a new, multi-level parking garage between the towers. This will be constructed above an existing four-level building that links the two towers and the entire structure will then be covered

Page 17

with the development of the Grootegeluk Coal Mine and the subsequent construction of the 3,600 MW Matimba Power Station. A char plant was subsequently added and a feasibility study for the production of semi-soft coking coal has been completed. At the end of 2007 the three residential areas that collectively form Lephalale town, had a population of approximately 20,000 people. The second phase of the Limpopo Coal, Energy and Petrochemical Cluster commenced with the construction of the Medupi Power Station in early 2008. The existing Grootegeluk Colliery will be expanded to supply this power station with coal from 2012 and for at least forty years after that. A range of intelligent interventions are required to capture and localize the economic advantages of this opportunity for the benefit of the local community. Firstly, the challenge for Limpopo, Waterberg District and Lephalale Municipality is to develop business propositions that would attract a significant portion of the capital investment and operating expenditures relating to Medupi and the coal mine expansion to the provincial and municipal economies. This will require a relationship between the Municipality, Eskom and Exxaro that is based on confidentiality, trust and information sharing, specifically with regard to capital and operating expenses. The relationship must be backed up with professional capacity for feasibility studies, business planning and investment promotion. The second proposed intervention within the context of the coal, energy and petrochemical cluster is derived from the obligation that rests on the Municipal LED Unit to ensure maximum beneficiation of local resources. It requires the municipality to continuously seek and promote opportunities for local value adding as a basis for sustainable job creation. Two obvious areas where opportunities for beneficiation should be sought are the fly ash stockpile from the power station and clay from the coal mine. A considerable volume of work has already been done on the beneficiation of fly ash. Thirdly, infrastructure and housing construction must be fast-tracked as a strategy to unlock the full potential of the Waterberg Coal Field. Increased bulk water supply and upgrading of the purification works, sewerage works and pump stations are urgently required in response to growing residential, commercial and industrial needs. The construction of a southern road bypasses from the R33 directly to the mine and power station sites are just as urgent as the elements of urban infrastructure described above. Heavy vehicles currently have no alternative but to travel through the town, disrupting traffic flows and damaging the road surface. Upgrading the R33 from Modimolle to Lephalale is also overdue. Most of these requirements are quantified and described in the Lephalale Infrastructure Master Plan. The infrastructure intervention by the Municipality that is most critically needed from an LED point of view is to implement the Master Plan and to make any

Page 20

planning refinements that may be necessary during the implementation process. House construction of the magnitude that is required for the Coal and Petrochemical Cluster in Lephalale presents a unique local economic development opportunity. Feasibility studies and business plans should be compiled for the local production of building materials in Lephalale, starting with brick manufacturing. The clay in the overburden at the mine that was referred to above could be an important resource in the manufacturing process. The fly ash stockpile from Matimba Power Station could serve as the bulk of the filling material for the bricks. Coordination with the Department of Labour is necessary to train local contractors.

Lephalale town into Botswana and to upgrading of the railway line from Lephalale town to Richards Bay. It will also be necessary to create an effective framework on intergovernmental relations that will allow Lephalale to collaborate with Botswana in developing the coal and petrochemical cluster in a regional context.

The fourth proposed LED intervention within the context of the coal, energy and petrochemical cluster is to ensure that social service provision is synchronized with the anticipated rapid residential growth. Standard social services include schools, medical treatment facilities and police stations. The complexities associated with single sex and foreign contract workers necessitate the provision of very specialized community welfare services in addition to the services referred to above. Fifthly, the LED Unit should create an effective facility where major business partners in the cluster, as well as the Municipality itself, can report on their skills development programmes and needs; and where the skills development programmes of the Department of Labour can be aligned with the skills development needs of the cluster as expressed by the major employers. Finally, within the context of the coal, energy and petrochemical cluster, it is recommended that a strategic environmental assessment should be conducted for the entire coal and petrochemical cluster area in which the cumulative impacts are assessed and the sensitive areas are identified. This should enable environmental impact assessments at the project level to copy information on cumulative impacts and to be fast-tracked in nonsensitive areas. All the recommendations that have been made above to capture the potential benefits of the Coal, Energy and Petro-chemical Cluster during its second phase are also relevant for the third and fourth phases, which are likely to commence after 2013. In addition, attention will also have to be given to road development from

Five economic development interventions are proposed for Focus Area Two as listed below, which should all be implemented at the same time: • • • • •

Upgrade Municipal Service Delivery Create Employment Information and Skills Development Centres Improve Public Transport Services between Focus Areas Encourage Retail Development Promote the Cattle Farmer Support Programme

Despite the scattered settlement pattern, there is an opportunity for retail development in Focus Area Two to serve the local market. A business plan is required to describe how best this opportunity can be realised, taking due cognizance of land availability and spatial nodal areas.

Regular meetings between the municipality and the major local residential property developers are necessary to align their intentions with local government processes and with coal and petrochemical cluster housing requirements. Housing development in Onverwacht and Marapong in response to new employment needs from Medupi and Exxaro will necessitate commercial development. It is recommended that the municipality should consider incentives in the form of reduced municipal rates to attract a suitable retail investor to Marapong.

basis. The scenario model assumes 0.8% natural growth from 2010 to 2019 and 0.7% growth from then onwards.

Lephalale Town Node 1 is the heart of the Lephalale municipal area measuring ± 13 800 ha. This node was divided into three sub nodes namely: •

Sub node 1 – Ellisras / Schaapplaats sub node measuring ± 3 100 ha.

Sub node 2 – Onverwacht / Paarl – Ledibeng sub node. This sub node also includes the Altoostyd development which was handled as a separate issue because of its unique character. This sub node measures ± 5 200 ha.


Sub node 3 – Marapong / Industrial area measuring ± 5 500 ha.

It is of dire importance that this node must grow and develop in an absolute correct and right way to ensure the future functionality and sustainability thereof. Set out in this document is eleven interventions and sixteen projects that if correctly executed will ensure that this goal will be reached. The interventions are:

Rural Settlement Cluster The rural settlement areas located northeast of Lephalale town, and east of the Lephalale/Phalale River. The economic development scenario for the 2030 planning horizon, estimates that the population in this node will decrease from 57106 in 2010 to 53507 in 2030. This decrease is mainly due to the assumption that 10% of the jobs in the Lephalale urban node (1,400 permanent plus contractor jobs) will be filled by persons from rural villages and furthermore that half of these persons (mostly young people without families) will move to the Lephalale urban node and that the other half will commute on a daily

Western Coal Fields (Steenbokpan) Development in South Africa is essential and it is important to develop all regions of South Africa to the best of the regions ability and to the countries prosperity. Each region is unique and its contribution to the growth of South Africa must be investigated to find its role in the bigger picture. The region that is referred to is the western Coal field, Cluster 3, in the Lephalale Municipal area of jurisdiction. As the name indicates the cluster is known for its coal fields and therefore it is the strengths of the cluster. The coal fields is the trigger for development and have a snowball effect on the sectors of mining, industry, transport, infrastructure services, agriculture, game farming and last but not the least housing. Cluster 3, as it indicates is the 3rd cluster in Lephalale Municipal area of jurisdiction and it is essential to incorporate the other 2 clusters to have an end result of an integrated planning document for the whole of the Municipal area. Vast tracks of land exist between the three nodes which enable compact development in the town through infill development in the future. To realise such intentions the SDF must clearly provide for scheduling of land release for development. This should be enforced by a proper Land-Use Management System. Lephalale is the economic hub of the municipal area. The town will remain the focus for future development. Lephalale also serves as regional service centre to the surrounding farming communities stretching as far as Botswana.

Page 21

Group Five Headquarters merges in the Waterfalls Business Estate Development

Page 22

Page 23

at an exponential rate around the world, this is still very new and unique in South Africa. “No one on our team has done such a large scale project before,” commented Antoniadis. He continued saying, “Considering that over 70 percent of our workforce is from the local De Aar community and have been trained on site, we have much to be proud of”. De Aar Solar Power became the only Photovoltaic (Solar) project exporting power into the De Aar Municipality line on 3 December 2013. This means that in future, when the power line is off due to scheduled maintenance by Eskom, or perhaps a fault on the line, De Aar Solar Power will be able to feed the whole of the De Aar town and surroundings areas. “Although our planned Commercial Operation Date is set for April, the project will in fact be able to produce enough power within the next couple of weeks to power the entire local town and neighbouring areas,” said Savva.

in 2011 and has many environmental benefits such as reduced carbon emissions and water saving. Its final solar panels have been installed making it a major milestone to be achieved and over 167 000 solar panels have been installed on the project in the last 5 months, making it

Page 30

one of the few Independent Power Producers of this scale, to reach this construction target in the Northern Cape area. “We’ve installed exactly 167 580 solar panels by hand since April, which is something that we can be extremely proud of considering the rocky terrain that we’ve had to contend

with,” said Savva Antoniadis, Project Manager for De Aar Solar Power. The sheer volume of these photovoltaic panels installed on this project site can be seen by commuters travelling along the R48. Whilst large scale solar projects have increased

During the commissioning process, the inverters were switched on for a period of time to check their integrity and reliability. During this period, power was exported to the Eskom grid and consumed by Eskom customers. No problems were encountered during the process and reliability was in fact verified; meaning that the power from the inverter area has continued to flow to the Eskom grid. Each inverter area produces approximately 2.4 MW peak power. It is anticipated that 6 of the 19 inverter areas were commissioned by 31 December 2013, resulting in approximately 14.4 MW of peak power being supplied to Eskom.There has had to be close coordination between the project team and Eskom to ensure that all the relevant experts were available for the commissioning process; and whilst De Aar Solar Power remains in control of the photovoltaic plant, Eskom is responsible for the Eskom Substation. During the peak construction period, up to around 3 000 modules were installed per day, which is a rate that any solar

Page 31

Reutech and Soitec Partner in Touwsrivier Solar Energy Project Reutech’s solar trackers at theCPV solar power plant near Touws River in the Western Cape.


eutech Radar Systems, a local technology company, developed a 105 square meter high accuracy CPV (concentrating photovoltaic power) tracker solution for a renewable power plant near Touws River in the Western Cape. After completion, this 44MW solar park developed by Soitec,will be the largest CPV power plant in the southern hemisphere. This plant is part of Bid 1 of the Government’s Renewable Energy Feed-In Tariff (REFIT) programme which adds 1400 Megawatts of renewable energy to the national grid. These robust and highly accurate CPV trackers were designed and developed at Reutech’s facility in Stellenbosch. The first prototype was developed, built and installed at Touwsrivier after only two months of extensive mechanical design

Page 34

engineering, being extremely short timescales for high technology projects of this nature. Soitec was selected by the Department of Energy as one of the preferred bidders through the country’s Independent Power Producer (IPP) programme. Reutech’s capabilities also include wind loading analysis, stress and deformation analysis, field assembly and maintenance, fixed and single axis mountings for photovoltaic power plants and optimized mechanical structures for custom requirements. Reutech, a subsidiary of Reunert Limited, develops and manufactures ground and naval search and tracking systems for application in the industrial, military and renewable energy environments. Reunert is listed on the JSE in the industrial goods and services sector.

New Soitec’s CPV Plant at Touwsriver T

he France-based Soitec has commissioned its 22MWp Touwsrivier concentrating photovoltaic (CPV) plant in South Africa and expecting to finish the entire 44MW plant in the near future.

resources. The corresponding programme is calling up for projects from independent power producers thus aiming at installing 3,725 MW of regenerative power generation capacity, including approximately 1,500 MW in PV.

Currently, the company has installed more than 60 percent of the power plant, which uses Soitec’s Concentrix CPV technology. The Touwsrivier solar power plant has fulfilled milestones set for commissioning 50 percent of the total capacity.

Soitec will now “seek to refinance the project and launch the construction of the power plant”. Completion of the CPV plant at Touwsrivier is scheduled for 2014, first parts of the project started commercial operation in mid-2013.The construction partner is a local “well known EPC company”, says company speaker Camille Darnaud-Dufour

According to Soitec, the event confirms that the plant performs in accordance with contractual specifications and validates the power purchase agreements applied to the solar plant. The commissioning also triggers refinancing of the project by making available proceeds from bonds issued on the Johannesburg stock exchange in April 2013. Soitec said that Touwsrivier is a major CPV plant in Africa. Recently, the Department of Energy in South Africa issued a preliminary approval to a refinancing scheme for Soitec’s equity position in the 44MWp Touwsrivier solar project. French CPV manufacturer Soitec reports having signed a power purchase agreement with the state owned South African power producer ESKOM on a 44 MW CPV plant in Touwsrivier located in the Western Cape region around 200 km northeast of Cape Town. The CPV plant succeeded in a call for projects from independent power producers initiated by the South African government – as a part of the Integrated Resource Plan launched in 2010. According to that plan, in 2030 about 42 percent of electricity in South Africa shall be produced from renewable

The 50 percent completion meets the completion targets of the 44MW solar plant’s power purchase agreement (PPA) with South Africa utility, Eskom. Concentrator PV (CPV) specialist, Soitec, has said its 44MW Touwsrivier solar power plant in South Africa, has reached 50 percent commissioning. Soitec has said it is confident that it will complete the remaining 50 percent on schedule-in a few months, using local partners and suppliers; already 60 percent of the 44MW CPV plant has been installed. The 50 percent completion meets the project targets for the 44MW solar plant’s power purchase agreement (PPA) with South Africa utility, Eskom. Reaching the 50 percent completion milestone will also enable the project to seek further finance, with availability of proceeds from a bond issued April 2013 on the Johannesburg stock exchange. Soitec finalised the US$100 million bond for the Touwsrivier solar plant in May 2013 - said to be the first publicly listed bond issued for a CPV plant.

Page 35

Tomorrow’s solutions today... Reutech Radar Systems offers highly skilled and multi-

 Fixed mountings for Photo Voltaic (PV).

disciplinary research and development capabilities in

 Seasonal single-axis azimuth trackers for PV with

both independent and client partnership product development programmes. The company's capabilities in the design and development of electro-mechanical tracking systems has been exercised in well-known projects such as the South African Large Telescope (SALT). Our capabilities include:  Design of optimised mechanical structures for

customised client requirements, wind loading analysis, stress and deformation analysis, environmental conditions and field assembly & maintenance.

manual seasonal elevation adjustment.

 Dual-axis trackers for PV.  High accuracy Concentrated Photo Voltaic (CPV)


 Heliostats for Concentrated Solar Power (CSP)

single tower applications.

 Extensive supply chain expertise in manufacturing.  Certification of structures.

Tel: +27 21 880 1150

All it takes is the sun and the right energy...

Page 36



Page 37

Jeffreys Bay Wind Farm Erects Wind Turbines The wind turbines are 80m tall to allow for optimum energy production, however, when the one of the blades stand vertically, the turbine’s tip height is an impressive 132m. The heaviest component is the nacelle, which contains the generator and gearbox; and weighs 86 tonnes. Its three 49m blades, made from fibreglass reinforced epoxy, are connected to the rotor at ground level before being hoisted to the top of the turbine. This is a complicated lifting exercise, in which the crane raises the assembled rotor whilst the smaller crane guides the rotor into the correct position. “It is remarkable to watch the two cranes working together to lift the rotor, which has a diameter of over 100 meters,” explained Pickering. Jeffreys Bay Wind Farm began transporting wind turbines from the Port of Ngqura to the site during July. Over 100 loads were transported during the first month and these loads travel to Jeffreys Bay Wind Farm as single abnormal consignments, with the largest blade deliveries requiring police escort.


arking an exciting milestone in the construction of wind farms is the Jeffreys Bay Wind Farmwhich is expected to supply enough clean, renewable electricity to power more than 114 116 South African homes and avoid more than 420,000 tonnes of carbon emissions each year. Jeffreys Bay Wind Farm, one of the largest wind farms in South Africa, has announced that the Project has begun erecting the first of its sixty wind turbines. With two specialist cranes, working simultaneously, it will take approximately two to three days, weather dependent, to construct a single turbine. “This is a pivotal point in the construction of this wind farm which is set to supply enough clean, renewable electricity to power more than 110 000 South African homes each year,” said Mark Pickering, General Manager of Jeffreys Bay Wind Farm.

Page 38

“Our team is committed to safety and is making every effort to minimise traffic disruptions,” said Pickering. The project is one of the first wind farms arising from the South African Government’s Renewable Energy Independent Power Producer Procurement Programme (REIPP). With demand for electricity continuing to grow in South Africa, the introduction of this clean energy will have far reaching benefits for the country’s power sector, economy and people.The wind farm is expected to start supplying electricity to the national grid by mid-2014. “Not only will the project be able to provide a significant number of homes with clean, renewable energy by harnessing the wind, it will also save millions of litres of water that would otherwise have been consumed in the production of energy,” concluded Pickering. As a matter of fact, Siemens will provide, install and commission the wind turbines and maintain them for the first ten years of operation. A consortium of Murray & Roberts and Conco are responsible for the engineering, procurement and construction of the balance of plant, including turbine foundations, civil works, the electrical collection network and the main substation. The construction is being managed by Mainstream Construction and the project company is managed by Globeleq.

JEFFREYS BAY WIND FARM IMPACTS ON LOCAL COMMUNITY THROUGH EMPLOYMENT Renewable energy generation aims to positively impact the environment and just as importantly local communities, especially through employment and skills transfer. The Eastern Cape is undoubtedly one of the primary regions that have been able to capitalize on the employment opportunities that this new sector offers, especially during the construction phase of the various wind farm projects, which require large numbers of labour from the local communities. Independent Power Producer, Jeffreys Bay Wind Farm, one of the Eastern Cape’s largest wind farms, currently employs almost 250 people from the various local communities on site, playing a role in up-lift through employment and training. “By employing local residents and providing on-the-job training, which can be applied at other future wind energy production projects planned in the Eastern Cape, this industry is able to make a positive difference in the lives of literally hundreds of families,” said Leo Quinn, Project Manager of Jeffreys Bay Wind Farm. During August last year, at the peak of construction, there were 602 people working on site, 45 percent of which were from the local communities in the Kouga Municipality. “As a Council, we have been especially grateful for the work and training opportunities from which local residents have benefited. We see the positive impact every day; there is food on the tables of poor families and people are being equipped with skills that will assist them in finding further future employment,” added Kouga Executive Mayor Booi Koerat. The workforce at Jeffreys Bay Wind Farm is fairly large due to the high level of activity currently on site, which includes the erection of the wind turbines, general construction activities as well as the transportation and off-loading of the turbine components. “We expect to be extremely busy for the next few months with a wide range of construction activities and rely heavily on our local workforce who remain motivated and dedicated to the successful construction of this project,’ commented Quinn.

Page 39

The 75 MW PV Plant Kalkbult “….South Africa’s first Clean Energy Connection to a Grid”

Page 40


catec Solar has connected its 75MW South Africa-based Kalkbult solar plant to the country’s national grid, three months ahead of schedule.

SMA is equipping one of the first large-scale PV plants on the African continent with 84 Sunny Central 800CP inverters. The South African 75-megawatt Kalkbult project went into operation in summer 2013. A total of 42 Transformer Compact Stations facilitate the medium-voltage solution for connection to the transmission line.“Basically the plant covers 105 hectares of a working sheep farm and includes 312 000

solar panels mounted on 156 kilometres of substructure linked to inverters, transformers and a high voltage substation.”Additionally, 840 Sunny String-Monitors provide for string monitoring in the PV array. The Norwegian developer of PV plants, Scatec-Solar has executed the multi-megawatt project within the framework of South Africa’s Renewable Energy Independent Power Producer Procurement Program. After its completion, the plant, occupying an area equating to 140 soccer fields now produce 145 million kilowatt hours of solar power per year –

Page 41

enough to provide sufficient electric current to 35,000 South African households. South Africans are now beginning to use renewable energy from the national grid. A solar power plant built by global energy provider Scatec Solar and local partners have become the first utility-scale renewable energy facility to supply electricity to Eskom after connecting to the grid three months ahead of schedule.

Page 42

Officially opened on Tuesday 12 November, the 75 megawatt (MW) Kalkbult solar photovoltaic (PV) plant near Petrusville in the sun-drenched Northern Cape generates 135 million kilowatt hours a year, equivalent to the annual electricity consumption of 33 000 households. It has been fully commissioned in 10 months, with construction which commenced in late November 2012 and electricity delivery to the grid started on September 27 2013.

programme, and proud that we are the first renewable energy plant to come on-line,” said Raymond Carlsen, CEO of Norway-based Scatec Solar at the inauguration ceremony. “Our teams worked literally day and night to make this happen. Suppliers made a huge effort to deliver their services and equipment, and local people who worked on the project were quick to learn despite the fact that many did not have previous experience in this kind of work.”

“Today we are extremely proud to have been awarded this project under the ambitious South African REIPPP

The plant is among 47 solar, wind and mini-hydro projects awarded 20-year contracts to generate electricity under government’s Renewable Energy Independent Power

Producer Procurement Programme (REIPPPP). Total investment is estimated at R74 billion, which will climb above the R100bn mark following government’s recent acceptance of 17 new bids. Introduced by the Department of Energy three years ago, the REIPPPP supports South Africa’s international commitments to combat climate change by reducing its near-total dependence on coal-based electricity and its high greenhouse gas emissions. The Kalkbult plant will avoid annual greenhouse gas emissions of 115 000 tons that would

Page 43

have been emitted by a fossil-fuelled plant, such as a coalfired power station. The project also gives momentum to the Green Economy Accord signed three years ago by government, business and labour with a goal to create 300 000 new jobs based on renewable energy generation, energy efficiency, biofuel production, manufacturing of equipment to support “green” projects, and natural resource conservation and rehabilitation. “Access to energy is a prerequisite for increased standard of living. The only way we will be able to provide energy in a sustainable way to an increasing global population is by utilizing renewable energy sources,” said Dr Alf Bjorseth, Chairman and founder of Scatec Solar. “South Africa is showing the way, and we are looking forward to develop more solar projects with our partners here. I am convinced that the Kalkbult plant will benefit South Africa, both regionally and nationally,” said Dr Bjorseth. Equity in the project has been provided by Scatec Solar, which is the largest shareholder, Norfund, Simacel, Stanlib/ Standard Bank, and Old Mutual Life Assurance Company. Capital investment has been financed through Standard Bank. A certain part of the revenue from the Kalkbult facility and a portion of dividends have been earmarked to support social and economic development initiatives in communities within a 50 kilometre radius. The Norwegian government also congratulated South Africa and Scatec Solar on the realization of this important project, both in terms of energy supply and the need for more clean energy. “This is a great example of what can be achieved when the private sector and government work together to find solutions to pressing issues such as energy shortage and climate change,” said State Secretary Paal Arne Davidesen at the Norwegian Ministry of Foreign Affairs. “This solar plant is only the beginning. Hopefully we will see solar power being introduced on a major scale throughout Africa in the coming years.” During peak construction periods, more than 600 employees - the majority from the local community – worked at the

Kalkbult construction site, achieving more than 750 000 accident free hours. Some 16% of employees were women, who participated at all levels, from management and administration to construction activities. As it goes, the number of people employed will decline to between 10 and 15 during operations and maintenance, but this phase will be accompanied by “20-year collaboration with local communities and the development of social and economic initiatives in areas such as education and health” explains Carlsen. The nearest town to the project is Petrusville, about 100 kilometres north east of De Aar on the N1. Land for the project was leased from a sheep farmer who will continue to run his business alongside the solar PV facility.

Kentz, delivering specialised engineering and construction solutions to the mining and resources industry across the African region...

“The fact that renewable energy can work in harmony with the environment and without disrupting surrounding activities is often overlooked,” said Carlsen. “After 20 years, we can upgrade the project with the latest technology and continue operations for many years or we can dismantle it and leave the environment in its original natural state.” Furthermore, two other projects being developed by Scatec Solar and South African partners will improve on the Kalkbult plant’s electricity generation performance, which is based on solar panels mounted at a fixed angle to the sun. A 40MW plant near Hannover, also in the Northern Cape, and a 75MW plant near Burgersdorp in the Eastern Cape will have panels mounted on single axes, enabling them to track the sun and optimise electricity generation. Carlsen further stated that the new plants, scheduled for commissioning during 2014, will be able to generate about 20% more electricity than fixed-panel plants. Of the 47 renewable energy facilities contracted during the first two phases of the REIPPPP, 27 are solar PV plants that will have combined installed capacity of 1 048MW, with Scatec Solar providing 190MW. Scatec Solar has installed about 300MW of solar PV capacity worldwide.

We make challenging projects happen....

Page 44

Kentz (Pty) Ltd P.O. Box 4458 Halfway House 1685 South Africa T: + 27 11 203 9600 E:

Page 45

Sere Wind Farm, a Transformational Catalyst

The National Energy Regulator of South Africa granted the R2.4bn Sere wind farm a generation licence in 2012. However, attaining the licence delayed the project — its initial deadline was October 2013, she said.

geothermal heat. Wind energy is currently the second most commercially deployed renewable energy after hydroelectric energy, although large hydroelectric energy isn’t considered renewable for several reasons.

According to Ms Nakedi, IPP developers who complained that Eskom was able to undercut their kWh tariff in the first two bid windows should remember that Eskom’s return on investment was slimmer, at 8 percent, rather than the “double-digit figures” from which they benefited. Eskom, as a utility, is able to take advantage of the lower borrowing rates offered by development finance institutions.

Advantages of wind power include:• Wind is a sustainable resource and, as a primary energy source, is free • Technology currently being developed may in future allow for the energy to be stored for use when required, for example at peak periods • Wind is a clean form of energy without emissions or waste products • There are growing numbers of energy users prepared to pay for the more expensive electricity generated from renewable sources

South Africa’s power generation is coal-heavy, with the country deriving about 80 percent of its energy directly from coal. The country pledged in 2009 to reduce its domestic greenhouse gas emissions trajectory by 34 percent by 2020, and by 42 percent by 2025, subject to “adequate financial and technical support”.

Disadvantages:• Capital costs are high and the production cost per kWh is higher than the cheap electricity currently produced by Eskom’s coal-fired power stations • Units are of small capacity (25 to 2 000kW) and it would take hundreds of wind turbines to replace a single thermal unit (currently ranging between 200-600MW) • Wind resources are erratic and can be used only at certain speeds • While it is a clean source of energy, the environmental impacts of wind energy can include noise, visual pollution and negative impacts on birdlife

By 2030, South Africa aims to meet 42 percent of its national demand for power using renewable energy sources. But IPP wind experts have warned that without a larger allocation for wind power in South Africa’s latest Integrated Resource Plan (IRP) 2010-2030, its manufacturing sector will suffer. The IRP sets out a reduced demand for wind energy, from 9,200MW to 4,360MW, just as it cuts projected national capacity requirements to 2030 by 6,600MW. Siemens Middle East and Africa sales head Tom Pedersen said the IRP allocation of 400MW-500MW a year was “simply not enough to create a sustainable, healthy and long-term manufacturing business in SA, there are very few, if any, markets with a healthy wind industry and less than 1,000MW installed per year.”



ith the ever increasing demand of power in the country, ESKOM’s Sere wind farm (a nametaken from the Nama word meaning ‘cool breeze’) is sited near Vredendal on the West Coast and has erected three of its planned 46 turbines which are on track to deliver first power by the end of this year; the state power utility’s renewables senior GM, Ayanda Nakedi. Funded by the World Bank; the African Development Bank; French development agency, Agence Française de Développement; and the Clean Technology Fund (CTF, the facility went into commercial operation in October 2013 and

Page 46

now adds 100MW to the national grid contributing to saving nearly 6-million tons of greenhouse gas emissions over 20 years. According to Eskom’s latest newsletter on its R300bn-plus build programme to alleviate South Africa’s tight energy supply, Ms Nakedi said the expected cost per kilowatt hour (kWh) to consumers was still 77c. This compared favourably with the average 89c/kWh achieved in the second Independent Power Producer (IPP) programme bid round, but was higher than the average 74c/kWh achieved in the third bid “window”.

Eskom was also “rolling out” solar photovoltaic technology for self-consumption in its Johannesburg headquarters and at the Kendal and Lethabo power stations. She said the utility had learnt that “stakeholder management” was important in these projects, which most often took place in rural areas where the unemployment rate was high. “We need to explain the technology to the people. It doesn’t create as many jobs as a coal-fired power station,” she said. Sere would employ about 400 people during construction, and about 10 during operations and maintenance, and the Upington plant about 1,000 during construction and 80 during operations and maintenance. The completed wind farm would have 46 Siemens 2,3VS108 turbines, each generating 2.3MW and positioned over an area of 16km². Generally, renewable energy is infinite, naturally replenished energy generated from natural resources such as wind, sunrays, water flow, ocean tides and

JWT 217

Wind is South Africa’s cheapest renewable energy source. Ms Nakedi said Eskom had ambitions to build renewable energy plants beyond Sere and its 100MW concentrated solar-power plant near Upington in the Northern Cape.

What the statue of liberty is for the USA, Powertech Transformers is for the transformer market in South Africa and beyond. It’s been over six decades since Powertech Transformers first opened its doors and over that time we’ve established ourselves as a symbol of trust and hope in the transformer market. We supply a complete range of transformers, from generator stepup to transmission and distribution transformers, three-phase and single-phase units, auto-transformers, arc-furnace, locomotive and traction transformers, miniature sub-stations, NECRT’s as well as shunt reactors.

Additional services include after-sales service, a SANAS accredited laboratory and testing facility, preventative maintenance, engineering solutions and field services. For more info contact us on: PTA (012) 318 9911 / JHB (011) 835 1011 CT (021) 534 2681 or e-mail: Powertech, channelling power to organisations through the influence of science. Now that’s magic.

217dtp Powertech Transformers Advert Constrution 91x135mm.indd 1

2014/02/28 3:37 PM

Page 47

Acid Mine Drainage; a Nightmare in the Mining Industry


s AMD is recognized as one of the more serious environmental problems in the mining industry, its causes, prediction and treatment have become the focus of a number of research initiatives commissioned by governments, the mining industry, universities and research establishments, with additional inputs from the general public and environmental groups. In industry, contamination from AMD is associated with construction, civil engineering mining and quarrying activities. Its environmental impact, however, can be minimized at three basic levels: through primary prevention of the acid-generating process; secondary control, which involves deployment of acid drainage migration prevention measures; and tertiary control, or the collection and treatment of effluent. Acid mine drainage, acid and metalliferous drainage (AMD), or acid rock drainage (ARD), refers to the outflow of acidic water from (usually abandoned) metal mines or coal mines. However, other areas where the earth has been disturbed (like construction sites, subdivisions, and transportation corridors) may also contribute acid rock drainage to the environment. In many localities the liquid that drains from coal stocks, coal handling facilities, coal washeries, and even coal waste tips can be highly acidic, and in such cases it is treated as acid rock drainage. Acid rock drainage occurs naturally within some environments as part of the rock weathering process but is exacerbated by large-scale earth disturbances characteristic of mining and other large construction activities, usually within rocks containing an abundance of sulfide minerals. The same type of chemical reactions and processes may occur through the disturbance of acid sulfate soils formed under coastal or estuarine conditions after the last major sea level rise, and constitute a similar environmental hazard. Subsurfacemining often progresses below the water table, so water must be constantly pumped out of the mine in order to prevent flooding. When a mine is

Page 48

abandoned, the pumping ceases, and water floods the mine. This introduction of water is the initial step in most acid rock drainage situations. Tailings piles or ponds may also be a source of acid rock drainage. Being exposed to air and water, oxidation of metal sulfides (often pyrite, which is iron-sulfide) within the surrounding rock and overburden generates acidity. Colonies of bacteria and archaea greatly accelerate the decomposition of metal ions, although the reactions also occur in an abiotic environment. These microbes, called extremophiles for their ability to survive in harsh conditions, occur naturally in the rock, but limited water and oxygen supplies usually keep their numbers low. Special extremophiles known as acidophilus especially favor the low pH levels of abandoned mines. Metal mines may generate highly acidic discharges where the ore is a sulfide mineral or is associated with pyrite. In these cases the predominant metal ion may not be iron but rather zinc, copper, or nickel. The most commonly mined ore of copper, chalcopyrite, is itself a copperiron-sulfide and occurs with a range of other sulfides. Thus, coppermines are often major culprits of acid mine drainage.

Methods of Treatment The primary aim of the short term solution for the treatment of AMD is focused on drawing down the AMD levels in the mining voids across three basins to below the ECL and treating the mine water to a level that can be discharged to the environment. Treatment is aimed at the neutralisation of the acidic mine water and precipitation and removal of heavy metals. The secondary aim is to precipitate excess sulphate e as gypsum from the mine water thereby reducing the salt load to the catchments to which discharge will take place. To achieve these aims, the High Density Sludge (HDS) process has been selected as the preferred treatment process. Although the treatment plant is the heart of the process design, the complete scheme for each basin includes the

AMD abstraction and conveyance to the treatment plant sludge/waste discharge of treatment water.

Lime neutralization By far, the most commonly used commercial process for treating acid mine drainage is lime precipitation in a high-density sludge (HDS) process. In this application, slurry of lime is dispersed into a tank containing acid mine drainage and recycled sludge to increase water pH about 9. At this pH, most toxic metals become insoluble and precipitate, aided by the presence of recycled sludge. Optionally, air may be introduced in this tank to oxidize iron and manganese and assist in their precipitation. The resulting slurry is directed to a sludgesettling vessel, such as a clarifier. In that vessel, clean water will overflow for release, whereas settled metal precipitates (sludge) will be recycled to the acid mine drainage treatment tank, with a sludge-wasting side stream. A number of variations of this process exist, as dictated by the chemistry of ARD, its volume, and other factors. Generally, the products of the HDS process also contain gypsum and unreacted lime, which enhance both its settleability and resistance to re-acidification and metal mobilization. Less complex variants of this process, such as simple lime neutralization, may involve no more than a lime silo, mixing tank and settling pond. These systems are far less costly to build, but are also less efficient (thus longer reaction times are required, and they produce a discharge with higher trace metal concentrations, if present). They would be suitable for relatively small flows or less complex acid mine drainage.

Calcium silicate neutralization A calcium silicate feedstock, made from processed steel slag, can also be used to neutralize active acidity in AMD systems by removing free hydrogen ions from the bulk solution, thereby increasing pH. As the silicate anion captures H+ ions (raising the pH), it forms monosilicic acid (H4SiO4), a neutral solute. Monosilicic acid remains in the bulk solution to play many roles in correcting the adverse effects of acidic conditions. In the bulk solution, the silicate anion is very active in neutralizing H+ cations in the soil solution. While its mode-of-action is quite different from limestone, the ability of calcium silicate to neutralize acid solutions is equivalent to limestone as evidenced by its CCE value of 90-100% and its relative neutralizing value of 98 percent In the presence of heavy metals, calcium silicate reacts in a different manner than limestone. As limestone raises the pH of the bulk solution and heavy metals are present, precipitation of the metal hydroxides (with

extremely low solubility) is normally accelerated and the potential of armoring of limestone particles increases significantly. In the calcium silicate aggregate, as silicic acid species are absorbed onto the metal surface, the development of silica layers (mono- and bi-layers) lead to the formation of colloidal complexes with neutral or negative surface charges. These negatively charged colloids create an electrostatic repulsion with each other (as well as with the negatively charged calcium silicate granules) and the sequestered metal colloids are stabilized and remain in a dispersed state effectively interrupting metal precipitation and reducing vulnerability of the material to armoring.

Carbonate neutralization Generally, limestone or other calcareousstrata that could neutralize acid are lacking or deficient at sites that produce acidic rock drainage. Limestone chips may be introduced into sites to create a neutralizing effect.

Ion exchange Cationexchange processes have previously been investigated as a potential treatment for acid mine drainage. The principle is that an ion exchange resin can remove potentially toxic metals (cationic resins), or chlorides, sulfates and uranyl sulfate complexes (anionic resins) from minewater. Once the contaminants are adsorbed, the exchange sites on resins must be regenerated, which typically requires acidic and basic reagents and generates brine that contains the pollutants in a concentrated form. A South African company claims to have developed a patented ionexchange process that treats mine effluents (and AMD) economically, but such claims remain unsubstantiated at present.

Precipitation of metal sulfides Most base metals in acidic solution precipitate in contact with free sulfide, e.g. from H2S or NaHS. Solid-liquid separation after reaction would produce a base metal-free effluent that can be discharged or further treated to reduce sulfate and a metal sulfide concentrate with possible economic value. As an alternative, several researchers have investigated the precipitation of metals using biogenic sulfide. In this process, Sulfate-reducingbacteria oxidize organic matter using sulfate, instead of oxygen. Their metabolic products include bicarbonate, which can neutralize water acidity, and hydrogensulfide, which forms highly insoluble precipitates with many toxic metals. Although promising, this process has been slow in being adopted for a variety of technical reasons.

Page 49

Brand Engineering implements electrical installations for Portside B

rand Engineering SA (Pty) Ltd was awarded the contract for the electrical installations for the 139 m high landmark Portside building in February 2012 when the project commenced. Established over 40 years ago, Brand Engineering, together with its two Empowerment Companies, Besamandla (Western Cape) and Besamandla (Eastern Cape), is a leading electrical contractor in Southern Africa and throughout the African continent. An integral part of the electrical installation was the installation of transformers to feed power to all 32 floors. “The transformers feed power from the Council sub-station on the ground floor to the two main boards for the two major clients. Power is then transferred from the main boards to sub-distribution boards on each floor,” explains Herman Kriel, Group Managing Director, Brand Engineering SA (Pty) Ltd.

main contractor’s safety manager. All safety issues were comprehensively documented. Brand Engineering is proud to have been part of the efficient, forward-thinking team which successfully worked on and has almost completed a project of such magnitude.


The different contractors and consultants worked together as a team to meet Green Star specifications, and the building has been awarded a 5 Star Green Star SA rating.

A total of 165 Brand Engineering employees worked full-time on the Portside project. Brand Engineering is completely committed to safety. “Stringent safety measures were in place and adhered to. Our employees are our number one asset and therefore safety is our priority,” says Kriel.


Page 50

Sited at the apex of a precinct housing a locational cluster of constructed and emerging future mediumhigh rise buildings, the synergies between Portside and the surrounding future developments will create a critical mass of related activities intended to revitalise and enhance this part of the city.

TEL: +27 21 550 9100


A joint venture development worthR1.6 billion between Old Mutual and FirstRand Bank set to become South Africa’s first green tall building progressing exceptionally well, the forefront of innovation and sustainable design, Cape Town’s new Portside building is well on schedule to become South Africa’s (and perhaps even the African continent’s) first green tall building. As construction progresses of the 32-floor building climbing above the city’s existing high-rises, green building principles are being incorporated at every level. “With the work that began in August 2011, the City of Cape Town proactively is supporting the project by adopting a phased approval process in an attempt to



Safety was managed by a Brand Engineering safety officer who worked full-time on site in conjunction with the Advert final.indd 1


he impressive Portside building encapsulates the energy of a rapidly evolving world-class city, with progressive architectural design features inspired by environmental sustainability and a unique and picturesque landscape. Portside is situated at a key nodal & arterial intersection in Cape Town and has been deemed appropriate for a tall building with approvals in place for height departures up to 147m.

Located in the Central City Urban Conservation Area (UCA), the relationship with its historical context and urban ecology is a crucial consideration. The building is an urban marker and responds directly to its context operating simultaneously at three city scales: CBD, local precinct, and immediate surrounds - whilst addressing two main aspects, urban form (building massing, height, form and composition, and its relation to the urban environment) and urban functioning (movement systems, public space, land use, building interface, microclimate).

In addition to the installation of transformers, Brand Engineering also fitted massive distribution boards, extensive cabling and cable ladders. A key challenge was getting the electrical equipment to the 32 levels of the building. This was done using external hoists and three major cranes.

“All the electrical installations were done in accordance with green building principles and Green Star specifications,” states Kriel. “For example, there are checks and balances in place on each floor to ensure energy consumption does not exceed a certain level. This was largely due to the overall Led lighting installation design. Furthermore all excess wiring and waste was disposed of according to Green Star requirements.”

S.A’s first tall green star building in Cape Town Portside Development facilitate the rapid development of the site,” explained Brent Wiltshire, Property Development Executive, and Old Mutual Property. “I’m very pleased to report that we now have all the final approvals in place, so it is ‘full steam ahead’ and we are on schedule for completion of the building in March 2014. “A building of this scale has far-reaching impacts on both employment creation and the on-going revival and growth of Cape Town’s CBD. Furthermore, not only will Portside be Cape Town’s tallest building, but we have incorporated environmental considerations in the design, construction and future management of the building. Our aim is to achieve a Green Star SA Office rating for both the design and construction (‘As Built’ Rating) of the building, confirming Portside as one of the most sustainable buildings in South Africa, and certainly the first high-rise to achieve this accolade.” Half of the 50 000 square meter building is set to house 2 000 employees across First Rand, FNB, RMB and Wesbank’s provincial headquarters. The remaining 25 000 square meters of AAA premium-grade office space will be available for leasing through Old Mutual Property. “This will be our home in the Western Cape, and we are very excited about the growth in the city of Cape Town, and the opportunity to be part of a project that will form the cornerstone of the new financial district,” said Stephan Claassen, provincial head of FNB. The Green Star SA rating system incorporates measurable environmental initiatives such as management, indoor environmental quality, energy, transport, water, materials, land use and ecology, and emissions. In conjunction with the architects, DHK and Louis Karol Architects, the developers have ensured that Portside sets the benchmark in creating an exceptionally healthy working environment, while

2013/11/29 12:21 PM

Page 51

ABSA Towers North


he spectacular ABSA Towers North which is undergoing a massive refurbishment is progressing exceptionally well. Situated in Main Street downtime Johannesburg, the magnificent ABSA Bank is earmarked for completion in May 2014 at a development cost of R180 million. Its revamp is for individual floors with respect to Electrical, Data, and HVAC, Fire and Wet Services as well as a redo to the floor areas with respect to all finishes to optimise the workable space for ABSA and introduce their new design philosophies into all aspect areas. With the magnificent upgrades and refurbishments, ABSA is undergoing a major facelift on the Upper Ground Canteen, kitchen, Art Gallery, Atrium, Client Meeting Suites, ablutions north reception; with an addition of a mail room. On the lower ground the south reception and reception ablutions along with a newly refurbished state-of- the- art control room have been done. The building takes advantage of South Africa’s favourable climatic conditions by designing with light-one experiences a great feeling of natural light and transparency. Although there is a public interface in the form of the art gallery, privacy from the street front is achieved in a street elevation of stairs that leads to the portico.The basement fire reticulation was redone to incorporate energy efficient light fitting as well as some cosmetic enhancements and one of the main issues dealt with here was sustainability.

Its internal atrium offers direct natural light for all offices. A modular spacing was utilised based on the materials standard sizes. In additions, floor slabs were constructed in economical coffer and trough systems. The biggest obstacle during the construction phase was to try and do any activity, be it demolition, services related during normal working hours. Tiber is continuously working in a live environment and hence all such activities that are noisy or entail any interface with live services had to be planned for after hours or weekend work with the proper Method Statements and Risk Assessments firstly drawn up incorporating the necessary ABSA protocol for approval by the relevant ABSA division thus, Cres, Engineering, FM, and BAU. On approval workwas only done on the allocated dates and times hence leading to certain delays in trying to complete numerous activities which Tiber had to incorporate into its programme. Initially it was difficult to incorporate these processes into the day to day workings on site but subsequently become second nature to management team on site as well as all subcontractors and become a lot easier to manage the process.

Architects aimed at creating a “benchmark” for this design regarding environmental sustainability-air is managed with heat-sinks, waste is stored at a source and recycled on site- their own waste management centre. With the aim to minimising heat load, fenestration was utilised for natural day light and rain water is harvested to supplement the airconditioning unit.

Main Contructors of ABSA Towers North Redevelopment

Page 54


Page 55

Page 56

February - March 2014 Issue