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September/October 2012


On the cover: HBS Aluminium Systems Tel: (011) 626-3330

3 From the Desk . . .

29 Letter to the Editor

Cover Story

Architectural Hardware

5 Great Finish to FNB’s New Building in PE

31 Can you Handle It? 34 Something for Everyone

Practice Profile

Access Security & Fire


37 All Fired Up

Bank On It

Glass & Glazing

Kitchens & Bathrooms

11 Through the Glass Ceiling

41 Objects of Desire

Energy Efficiency

42 News & Views

14 Top That!

55 AAAMSA Matrixes

Finding Specs & Regs

Subscription Please email us if you wish to subscribe to “Architect & Specificator” at R405,00/year (price excludes VAT, incl postage and packaging); R1020,00/year for Africa/Overseas.

17 SA in the Dark?

Trends in Sport 21 Olympic City

Cladding & Coatings 22 Get it Covered 27 On the Surface

Architect & Specificator is the official journal of the following organisations:

SASEMA, SA Shower Enclosures Manufacturers Association

AAAMSA, The Association of Architectural Aluminium Manufacturers of SA incorporates:

SAGGA, the SA Glass & Glazing Association EPSASA, the Expanded Polystyrene Association of Southern Africa

SABISA, the SA Building Interior Systems Association

TPMA, the Thermal Panel Manufacturers’ Association

ASDA, the Aluminium Stockists’ & Distributors’ Association

AAAMSA Fenestration SASA, the Skylight Association of Southern Africa

SAGI, South African Glass Institute

TIASA, the Thermal Insulation Association of Southern Africa Promech Publishing: P O Box 373, Pinegowrie, 2123 Tel: (011) 781-1401 Fax: (011) 781-1403 E-mail:, Website: Editor: Susan Custers Contributor: Brigitte Billings Advertising: Di Bluck DTP: Zinobia Docrat/Donovan Vadivalu Printer: Typo Colour Printing, Tel: (011) 402-3468/9 FSC (Forestry Stewardship Accreditation)

SAFIERA - South African Fenestration & Insulation Energy Rating Association AAAMSA, PO Box 7861, 1685 Halfway House, E-mail: Tel: (011) 805-5002, Fax: (011) 805-5033, Website: Views expressed in articles and advertisements are not necessarily the view of AAAMSA members or the publisher. Articles or extracts thereof may be reproduced, provided prior permission is obtained from the publisher and full acknowledgement is given.

Architect & Specificator is an alternate monthly magazine. 9100 copies are distributed to individuals and companies involved in the building industry

Architect & Specificator

September/October 2012



Architect & Specificator

September/October 2012

From the Desk Our Association has published a brochure entitled: “Certification for Fenestration in Compliance with SANS 10400 Parts A, N & XA.”


his brochure has, and is, widely distributed and is available from our web-site: http:// Publications/AAAMSA/Certification%20 for%20Fenestration.pdf Government Gazette # 31084 dated 30 May 2008 declared regulations, as set out, to come into operation on 1 October 2008. Government Gazette # 34463 dated 22 July 2011 declared regulation XA, as set out, to come into operation on 9 November 2011. The above Gazettes not only introduced Energy Efficiency in Buildings but also compelled participants in the building industry to reliably demonstrate, or predict with certainty, to the satisfaction of the appropriate local authority, that an adopted building solution has an equivalent or superior performance to a solution that complies with the requirements of the relevant part of SANS 10400 (Regulation AZ4 (1)(b)(ii)). This is reinforced by regulation A2 (1)(g) which requires any person intending to erect any building to submit to the local authority a declaration in the relevant portion of Form 1 contained in SANS 10400-A as to how the applicable functional regulation (ie, National Building Regulations) shall be satisfied. To assist the industry with ease of compliance with the above, our Association monitors the following Fenestration Certification:

Fenestration Certification - Performance Compliance Report Obtainable from System Suppliers

Hans A Schefferlie, executive director

(regulation AZ4 (1)(b)(ii)). Attachment for Form 1 of Sans 10400-A. • Procurement • Upon Completion - Handover of Building (Regulation N1 (1)). Attachment for Form 4 of Sans 10400-A.

Fenestration Certification - Energy Rating Certification

Obtainable from System Supplier/Manufacturers/ Contractors/Installers. Do not use certification from system suppliers for final handover

For use for the following administrative building activities: • Application for Approval of Erection of building (regulation AZ4 (1)(b)(ii)). Attachment for Form 1 of Sans 10400-A. • Procurement • Upon Completion - Handover of Building (Regulation XA). Attachment for Form 4 of Sans 10400-A.

Fenestration Certification - Certificate of Conformance Obtainable from Galzier

For use for the following administrative building activities: • Application for Approval of Erection of building (regulation AZ4 (1)(b)(ii)). Attachment for Form 1 of Sans 10400-A. • Procurement

Fenestration Certification - Performance Test Certificate

Obtainable from Manufacturers/Contractors/Installers

For use for the following administrative building activities: • Upon Completion - Handover of Building (Regulation N1 (2)). Attachment for Form 4 of Sans 10400-A. Hans A Schefferlie, Executive Director AAAMSA, E-mail: Tel: (011) 805-5002, Fax: (011) 805-5033, Website:

For use for the following administrative building activities: • Application for Approval of Erection of building Architect & Specificator

September/October 2012



Architect & Specificator

September/October 2012


A Great Finish to FNB’s New Building In PE HBS Aluminium Systems supplied the HulaBond composite panels used on the eastern and southern facades of the new FNB building in Port Elizabeth. Designed by Stauch Vorster Architects, the HulaBond was installed by Atlantic Aluminium.


ulaBond is South Africa’s best selling cladding product. It is an aluminium composite panel consisting of a 3mm polyethylene core and two 0.5mm skins with a PVDF paint finish. Benefits include:

More versatile

• Greater convenience

More cost effective

HulaBond can be up to 40% cheaper than some of the imported composite panels. No up-front payment, letter of credit or any other financial commitment is required. As with any HBS product, you only pay on receipt of the HulaBond.

• A wide range of colours • Cost effective • More versatile • Quick turnaround

Quick delivery

A lot more colour for a lot less hassle Greater convenience

It has never been easier to order standard HulaBond as HBS stocks HulaBond 1250 x 3200mm panels in white, silver and champagne in Johannesburg, Cape Town and Durban.

Wide range of colours

HBS Aluminium Systems can manufacture up to 1500 x 5800mm in 4mm or 6mm thickness. Double sided panels and a fire resistant core are also available. Minimum orders are only 1000m².

HulaBond is available in 24 colours and we can match any sample. The minimum order quantity for any colour is 1000m² - only 125 panels. A lot more colour for a lot less hassle.

Most project specific requirements such as colour, width or length can be delivered within nine weeks of the order being placed.


HulaBond is South Africa’s most trusted brand name in cladding. A 15 year warranty is available for projects on request. Michelle Cochrane, HBS Aluminium Systems, Tel: (011) 626-3330, Email:,

Architect & Specificator

September/October 2012




Bank On It The concept of high-tech security often brings with it images of Tom Cruise, suspended from a ceiling, waiting for a single bead of sweat to set off a series of alarms alerting squads of heavily-armed guards.


n this instance, reality is not far from Hollywood’s version. When “Architect & Specificator” speaks to Sjef van der Vorst, partner at APMI, he tells us about the firm’s experience in the design and implementation of specialised services to the banking industry.

Easy to believe that the process is uncomplicated, but the technical aspects can be overwhelming Banking details

“The company started in December ’94 and has grown to include a number of senior architects, junior architects, project managers and draughtspeople, with offices in Johannesburg and Polokwane,” he begins. “While we have a strong background in retail centres, our real forte is providing high security facilities for major banks throughout South Africa, as well as into Africa. We’ve been doing this for over 12 years now, so we know the in’s and out’s pretty well.”

Sjef van der Vorst, APMI

Operating from a client brief, Sjef explains that the firm will design around aspects such as number of teller workstations required, note and coin sorting areas, storage facilities and safe loading areas for cash-in-transit vehicles and their drivers. Buildings may be existing structures, or built from scratch,

Most of APMI’s facilities are built in an ‘onion’ fashion, with various zones leading to a high-level security area in the centre


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September/October 2012


AVAIL ABLE but all require the same intense focus on detail. In almost all cases, discretion is a priority, with APMI being required to sign non-disclosure agreements to safe-guard the integrity of the facilities. “Often, once a project is completed, we will provide the installation details to the client on CD, and then destroy all of the working files held in our offices,” adds Sjef.

Onion design

“These buildings are designed in an ‘onion’ fashion, comprising various security zones, with the highest security level in the centre of the building,” he says. “You’re generally looking at a secure site, with fortified perimeter wall, biometric systems such as fingerprint and iris identification, and security access doors. They can be as small as 170m2 for a shopping centre, up to 6000m2 for banks.” Sjef’s simple description makes it easy to believe that the process is uncomplicated, but the technical aspects can be overwhelming. “We’ve worked on about 35 projects, so I guess they’ve become routine,” he smiles. “But there’s always some challenge to overcome, which keeps it exciting.” These challenges usually take the form of managing security systems which are worth as much as the buildings themselves. “If you’re constructing a R35 million building, add another R35 for security,” he advises.

Blown away

“It’s a highly sophisticated field – and it’s driven by

the methods of the attackers. They’ll use diamond cutters, blow-torches, explosives…they’ll even drive trucks through the walls!” For this reason, materials and accessories can’t be conventional – reinforced concrete and post-tensioned slabs are par for the course.

Blast protection in the form of surface coatings ensures that walls don’t shatter like glass “In the past, facilities like these might use walls a metre and a half thick; now we have reinforced walls of 150mm with the equivalent strength. These offer the advantage of saving space, which is important in facilities running in areas where space is at a premium.” Additional blast protection in the form of surface coatings ensures that walls don’t shatter like glass. However, in the case of an onslaught, even innocuous items can become deadly. “I once watched a video clip of an explosive device on a security door. The door withstood the blast, but the handle flew off and almost hit someone in the head.”

Bright lights

Mechanical installations are another important consideration. “There are no windows in the buildings we design, so air-con and lighting are big issues. These projects are not able to meet energy efficiency regulations, so they’re given exemptions,” he continues. Sensors and cameras require high light levels 24 hours a day, so lighting bills are

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September/October 2012




Could this be a deadly missile?

not for the faint-hearted. We ask if there’s any chance of an intruder accessing a vault by crawling through an air-conditioning duct – after all, it always works for Mr Cruise. Sjef bursts out laughting. “I’d like to see them try it in one of our buildings! Ducts are blocked with grids of 19mm round bar spaced 100mm apart and bolted into the walls. Even if you tried getting through with an angle grinder, seismic sensors would pick up the vibrations.”

Plain Jane

For obvious reasons, the design team’s creativity is limited in terms of architectural elements. “Some of our buildings might be called ‘Fort Knox’,” he smiles, “but for the sake of personnel who must work within them, we try to add aestheticism as far as our brief will allow, usually in the form of vibrant colour schemes and wall decoration.

The door withstood the blast, but the handle flew off and almost hit someone in the head “We also aim to disguise unsightly installations, perhaps by using metal cladding or some other covering.” This is necessary when as many as 500 cameras may be required to oversee every step of a note’s movement from teller to vault. These cameras are powerful enough to identify individual serial numbers. “Here we collaborate with specialists to plan camera installations,” says Sjef, explaining that the process requires computer software to manage. The systems can come with so many metres of fibre optics and cabling that ceiling voids can literally contain a rat’s nest of wiring if not handled correctly.


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September/October 2012


AGE AVAILABLE Art or protection?

In some cases, the heavy-duty nature of tasks in an area will determine the materials used, and these may be unavoidably utilitarian. “In areas where heavy trolleys are regularly transported, we are compelled to specify flooring such as vinyl or epoxy, so again, it’s really only colour that can be used as a design element,” he admits. Undoubtedly, if a teller had to choose between artistic features or protection from armed thugs they’d go for the latter. Architecture has many drivers, not least of which are aesthetics and social enhancement. However it’s easy to forget that at its simplest level, architecture must remain functional. While some projects may make waves for their high-end design specs, it’s good to know that there are firms looking after the safety issues too. Fortunately, for those on the APMI design team there are sufficient commercial projects to keep the juices flowing. Sjef van der Vorst, APMI, Tel. (011) 486-0495, Fax. (011) 486-0575, Email.

The firm also designs and manages construction of commercial and retail centres

Architect & Specificator

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Architect & Specificator

September/October 2012


Through the Glass Ceiling The recent Glass Expo Africa 2012, South Africa’s Glass and Aluminium showcase, drew significant interest from industry this year, with a number of displays catching the attention of key roleplayers.

Architect & Specificator” speaks to Louis van Wyk of SAGGA for his take on the event. “The initial impression was that we didn’t have as many exhibitors as previous years, and many of the exhibits were downscaled,” he begins. “However, the quality of visitor was excellent.” Louis feels that this was due to some clever planning from the organisers. “They incorporated the

Some of the big names were conspicuous by their absence

glass conference into the hall,” he explains, “which encouraged delegates to walk through the exhibits during breaks.” According to organisers, Specialised Exhibitions, visitors showed a similar profile to the previous Expo in 2010, with a prevalence of architects, building contractors, managers of construction companies and specifiers. They also cited a significant percentage of high ranking executives, although final figures have yet to be released.

On show

Louis adds that there were some excellent exhibits that captured a good amount of interest. “HBS Technol had a really good stand displaying their range of thermally broken aluminium profiles for energy efficiency. They’re the first locally produced products of this nature, which was quite exciting,” he says. Wispeco launched Crealco their new creative aluminium architectural range, featuring energy efficient window and door systems. These included a more progressive range of energy efficient products that maintained strong levels of aesthetic appeal for the high-end market. The new aluminium shutters and aluminium balustrades were particularly popular. “They also had a good simulation programme on display, showing the performance of different glass

Architect & Specificator

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Architect & Specificator

September/October 2012


and frames in terms of SANS 10400XA Energy Efficiency,” says Louis. Wispeco’s u-solve is designed to calculate whole-window U-factors and SHGC values for Wispeco’s extrusion systems.

Top form

Bohle was on top form to celebrate their 10th anniversary in South Africa, while the AAAMSA team fielded numerous enquiries about the new energy efficiency regulations. “It’s still proving to be a real challenge for architects who have to do the calculations for energy requirements,” Louis acknowledges. Some exhibitors adopted innovative ways of educating visitors. The PG Group turned their stand into a house incorporating nine different windows of varying glass and frame combinations to compare performance and u-values. The display culminated in a window containing PG’s new SmartGlass which covers a broad spectrum of regulatory requirements.

Good feedback

“From the reports I’ve had back, the conference was very well received,” he continues, telling us that the emphasis was on energy efficiency, with a view to updating industry members on the regulatory changes and developments. Topics included: 6 6 ‘Current energy generating forecast’ by Barry Bredenkamp; 6 6 ‘CIRS weather map – future climatic zones’ by Llewellyn van Wyk; 6 6 ‘Rotatable ‘Guarded Hot Box’ by Gerrit Genis; 6 6 ‘Product development in fenestration’ by Hermann Rolfes; 6 6 ‘Clay Brick Association – Future developments in masonry wall developments’ by Howard Harris; 6 6 ‘National Building Regulations’ by Rudolph Opperman; 6 6 ‘International Glass Database’ by Andreas Landman, and 6 6 ‘Thermal Insulation’ which was presented by Hans Schefferlie in the absence of Atisha Gopichund. While some of the big names were conspicuous by their absence, Louis feels positive about future events. “I think we’ll see more representation at the next show in two years time. But as things stand, I think this was a good turnout for the books.” Louis van Wyk, SAGGA, Tel: (011) 805-5002, Fax. 011 805 5033,

Architect & Specificator

September/October 2012



Top That! It took Phineas Fogg 80 days (with the help of some convenient time zones) to get around the world – which seemed like a tremendous feat at the time. But our expectations have risen considerably since then.


ow the Chinese are planning to erect the world’s tallest building in just 90 days and the claims are drawing almost as much derision as Mr Fogg’s travel itinerary. Targeted to reach 838 metres, the new Sky City One will outstrip the current record holder – the Burj Khalifa – by ten metres, and be completed in a twentieth of the time.

World’s tallest building in just 90 days The Burj took 1931 days between 2004 and 2010 – a comparative snail’s pace, while the Empire State building whoosed up in just 410 days, but at less than half the height of Sky City One, it’s positively diminutive. “Architect & Specificator” took to the web in search of more information and this is what we’ve uncovered.

Hot air?

The Chinese Broad Group, has established itself


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September/October 2012

as an expert in air-conditioning technology, which may not seem a suitable background to move into the construction industry. However, when the company branched out into building, it did so on a grand scale. Among others, it built the 15-storey New Ark Hotel prototype in one week, a 30-storey hotel prototype near Dongting lake in 15 days and the Broad Pavilion in 2010 United Nations Climate Change Conference in eight days. All structures were built using what it calls its Broad Sustainable Building Concept (BSB). The secret to the speed of delivery lies in the ability to construct 95% of the building in prefabricated modules. This allows the Broad Group to manufacture under ideal factory conditions and then simply erect the sections on site. Critics are convinced that the builder will be excluding this manufacturing time from the actual construction schedule, which they believe is ‘cheating’. They also claim that plans couldn’t possibly include


not to wonder what they’ve left out of the plans.

And it’s Green

In addition to being tall and fast, the structure will also consume just one fifth of the energy expected by a building of this stature, since its structure incorporates a myriad of energy efficient features. Among these are six times less material usage, exterior window solar shading, heat recovery fresh air units, and enhanced insulation due to fifteen centimetre thick outer walls and quadruple glazed windows.

laying of foundations and curing times, further diminishing the scope of the project. Others feel that whether this is the case or not, 90 days is still an impressive delivery time.

The Burj Kalifa cost $1,5 billion to erect, which seems reasonable

Super Scraper

Another area in which the Broad Group claims to have things taped is that of earthquake resistance. Tests on a 30-storey prototype saw a structure withstanding earthquakes with magnitudes of 9 under test conditions. The fact that their R&D team managed to build a 30 storey building and simulate a full-scale earthquake under research conditions is impressive in itself.

On completion, the building will boast one million square metres of usable floor space and its 220 floors will be connected by 104 separate elevators. This will provide its 174 000 occupants with sufficient leisure and retail facilities to make leaving the building unnecessary: a hotel, school, hospital, offices, shops and restaurants should keep most busy indefinitely. This would be handy because the self-contained city makes no allowances for vehicles. Other areas in which Sky City One outstrips the competition appears in the budget. The Burj Kalifa cost $1,5 billion to erect, which seems reasonable, until you see the almost ridiculously modest budget of $628 set aside for the new building. It’s hard

Not rattled

However, whether they succeed with their ambitious plan is still to be seen – despite reports stating that plans have been approved and work is set to start in November this year, others claim that the Chinese authorities haven’t granted final permission to build yet. Sources: Gizmag, CNN, Broad Group, ABC News

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Architect & Specificator

September/October 2012


SA in the Dark? The 13th of August was a memorable day for most of South Africa as thousands of us raced into our streets and yards to witness the uncharacteristic winter snowfall before heading back to our heaters and hot chocolate.


his bit of levity was almost our undoing however. The resultant power surge consumed 94% of the country’s electricity capacity and almost shut down the entire grid. It would have taken three weeks for Eskom to get back up and running. This is according to the South African National Energy Development Institute (SANEDI), a new agency established by government.

Consumed 94% of the country’s electricity capacity and almost shut down the entire grid Hans says: Some steel window manufacturers carry the SABS mark but don’t comply with the regulations – and I can prove it! The figures are startling, and outspoken supporter of energy issues, Hans Schefferlie, Executive Director at AAAMSA, is up in arms. “Can you imagine what three weeks without electricity would do to our country? We’d grind to a halt!” he tells “Architect & Specificator”.

More blackouts

But according to Hans, this is merely the tip of the iceburg. “I anticipate more rolling blackouts by the end of 2013 and a complete crisis by 2020 if government doesn’t build more power stations,” he intones. “We need more power! In order to run safely, we need at least 15-20% more capacity than our consumption. The demand on the 13th of August resulted in a dangerous shortfall.” While many point at the construction industry as a major consumer of electricity, it is actually the residential market which creates the problem. Typically responsible for 17% of South Africa’s average consumption, residential use skyrockets to 35% during peak periods. “These surges can only be accommodated by a power station. A mirror in the veld or windmills in the desert are not going to cut it,” says Hans in response to comments about the tender which is currently out for three windfarms to generate energy. “A windfarm provides a measly 19kW; we need 70 000. Government has to build more power stations.” With an estimated cost of R2.6 trillion to meet demand by 2030, Hans is convinced the

powers that be are keeping the figures quiet to avoid public panic. But maybe a little panic would be a good thing since he feels that the importance of the energy efficiency message has to be brought home – literally. “The problem lies with us as consumers,” he adds. “All of us go home and turn on countless electrical appliances every day. We need to change this habit, but we’re not listening to the warnings.”

Deaf ears

It seems that others are not getting the message either, specifically in the building industry. “The Energy Usage in Buildings legislation is in place and it must be complied with, but I still hear professionals questioning whether it’s a reality yet. Nine months after its implementation, projects are still underway which don’t comply with the regulations. Why not? The legislation is there to help with the energy crisis.” The problem is exacerbated by confusion in the industry. “There is a rumour in the market that says you have to use double glazing to comply with the legislation. I wish! There are many other misconceptions too. In fact, it’s really quite simple; you just follow the guidelines they stipulate. “If you’re working with less than 15% fenestration, then it’s business as usual,” Hans explains. “For over 15%, it’s necessary to apply some basic calculations.” For structures with fenestration areas over 15% of the floor area, designers must follow the glazing calculations for Energy Usage Legislation, included in AAAMSA’s fenestration brochure, which specify a default U-value of 7,9. Alternatively, those who attain SAFIERA Energy Rating Certification will have a U-value of 5,7. This effectively gives you 30% more glass usage in your building,” he adds.

Market killer

“The real killer in the market is related to air filtration,” Hans goes on. “It is troubling to see how many products fail in this regard.” This comment comes in light of the number of materials that have not made the grade which continue to be marketed to the public. “We’ve seen problems with steel window frames, and it’s likely that wood has the same problem. Timber and steel frames do not meet the requirements in terms of 204 air filtration either. Concrete

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Architect & Specificator

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1 for -XA:201 0 0 4 0 1 SANS h 4.4.4 owing: Paragrap s the foll ie if c e p tration s n o 5% fenes 1 fenestrati to p u ly with with rey comp ents. Buildings to s .1 r e .4 p .4 4 rea em et floor a erformance requir p area to n y to rg e n e um on area the minim fenestrati ll a a h h s it % w s 15 Buildings at exceed tration in th y re to s nes area per ents for fe net floor requirem e th h it comply w with SANS 204. shall be ce filtration in accordan ir a n tratio All fenes 613. h SANS it w e c n a rd o in acc

windows, on the other hand, have been tested and do meet the requirements. If you’d like to see a list of approved aluminium, pvc, timber and concrete products just refer to our matrices (see pages 55 to 64).”

It is troubling to see how many products fail Hans says: None of the steel window frames in stock in building material warehouses meet the SANS air filtration requirements – throw them away! Here he mentions that the membership is not limited to aluminium manufacturers. “Membership of AAAMSA is open to any company who successfully passes one test of fenestration in accordance with SANS 613, irrespective of material. We are not exclusively aluminium.” This raises the true point of the energy issue: it’s going to take a combined effort to avert a disaster and nobody will be exempt – energy affects everyone.

Hans says: AAAMSA accommodates all types of material in the market as long as the workmanship passes the 613 fenestration test. Hans Schefferlie, AAAMSA, Tel: (011) 805-5002, Fax: (011) 805-5033, Email:,

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Architect & Specificator

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Olympic City Some former Olympic sites are retrofitted and used in ways that belie their grand beginnings; turned into prisons, housing, malls, gyms, churches. Others sit unused for decades and become tragic time capsules, examples of misguided planning and broken promises of the benefits that the Games would bring. After the events are over, the medals have been handed out and the torch is extinguished, what’s next? What happens to a city after the Olympics are gone?


he Olympic City is an ongoing project by Pack and Hustwit that looks at the legacy of the Olympic Games in former host cities around the world. Since 2008, Pack and Hustwit have sought out and photographed the successes and failures, the forgotten remnants and ghosts of the Olympic spectacle. Thus far they've documented Athens, Barcelona, Mexico City, Los Angeles, Montreal, Lake Placid, Rome, and Sarajevo, with plans to document Beijing, Moscow, Berlin, London, and other Olympic cities. The project will culminate with the publication of a limited-edition book of photographs in Spring 2013. About the Artists: Gary Hustwit is an independent filmmaker based in New York and London. Jon Pack is a Brooklyn-based photographer whose work has been exhibited in galleries in the US and Europe. About Storefront: Founded in 1982, Storefront for Art and Architecture is a nonprofit organisation committed to the advancement of innovative positions in architecture, art and design. Their programme of exhibitions, artists talks, film screenings, conferences and publications is intended to generate dialogue and collaboration across geographic, ideological and disciplinary boundaries. As a public forum for emerging voices, Storefront explores vital issues in art and architecture with the intent of increasing awareness of and interest in contemporary design.

Storefront for Art and Architecture, Kara Meyer, Tel: 212.431.5795, Fax: 212.431.5755, Email:,

Architect & Specificator

September/October 2012



Get it Covered There’s a lot more to surface options than simple stone cladding, and some companies have taken the business to a whole new level. The Ergosystem umbrella encompasses three separate arms including demountable systems, acoustics and translucent cladding, with each division being a separate specialised company headed by a dedicated specialist who eats, sleeps and breathes his subject.


he guy to speak to about glass is Guy, John is a specialist in acoustics while Dean is Mr Flexible Walling himself,” we’re told when “Architect & Specificator” meets Guy Kenyon, John Hicks and Dean Armstrong at the new Ergosystem Group showroom in Décor Park.

Better cladding

“Cladding is always seen as just regular stone tiles,” says Dean. “But we’ve introduced a new take on it with sculpted panels that have been individually carved. Using our expertise and the talents of our artistic partners, anything is possible. Our products are utilised extensively in speciality areas such as Ratanga Junction and theme restaurants. It’s artwork that applies to themed applications.”

PVC options, not necessarily a no-no In addition there’s a mind boggling array of unconventional cladding options which takes the concept into realms that would leave an interior decorator giddy with delight. For instance, MirroFlex robust textured thermoplastic cladding comes in every possible finish from mirrored to bronze, with an embossed pattern which provides continuous flow. “Physically it competes with textured wallpaper but in terms of function it outshines wallpaper,” Dean tells us. “It’s printable, laminatable and has edge trims to avoid damage to corners. On wallpaper you’d use aluminium on corners, which detracts from the finish.”


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September/October May/June 2012 2012


While some shy away from PVC options, Dean assures us that from an environmental perspective, it’s not necessarily a no-no. “PVC is a thicker plastic and the world is not opposed to thick plastics – it hates the thin version,” he says. “With embossing and laminates you’re looking at almost endless design finishes. MirroFlex is best compared with laminates in terms of function and performance. It’s flexible, pliable and formable, and can wrap around surfaces and domes.” The product is also available for ceiling applications, with various trims, from a basic clip-on option to more decorative mouldings and cornices. “The product gets its claim to fame by easily upgrading buildings,” Dean adds. “It’s been used extensively in shows like Extreme Makeover.” Guy is also a fan of the range, adding, “You can spruce up an old ceiling with no fuss, its installation is waste-free and allows renovation with reduced transportation cost because it’s so light. Most of our cladding can be fixed onto raw substrate, which minimises materials and preparation.”

Sound advice

But to the Ergosystem team, there’s more to a great product than simple good looks. “Acoustics is becoming important in commercial buildings,” John tells us. “Companies are moving away from white noise machines and using the space available, like ceiling areas and walls, rather than encroaching into functional areas. This can incorporate a large variety of funky options for sound reduction. For example, our Fabritrak product is basically an acoustic track with foam inside and fabric stretched over it. You can use any fabric you like, so the finishes are limitless.” In some instances, areas require partitioning that will provide privacy to groups on either side. “Hufcor acoustic sliding walls allow you to use spaces without cross-pollination of sound and the product can have sound reduction capabilities of 53DB, which is very difficult to achieve, even with brick walls. They can be constructed to any size – there’s one in the Birchwood Centre which is eight metres high and 26 metres wide,” John tells us. “It not only separates sound but is also an aesthetic way of providing flexible space use. There’s a large variety of finishes from vinyl to fabric and more. He adds that since it’s a specialised product engineered to fit into a specific space, there are limited tolerances. “We have to work closely with the architects to ensure the right result, however it’s a high-end product, so Architect & Architect Specificator & Specificator September/October May/June 2012



Left to right: Guy Kenyon, Dean Armstrong, Richard Turnbull and John Hicks

we believe it’s vital to go to any lengths to offer the quality the client expects.”

More on sound

A lot more has been done in the sphere of acoustic wall treatment, and much of it is designed to supersede the old egg-box style sound-proofing options many are accustomed to. “Wovin is a modular product that allows backlighting, so it’s aesthetically pleasing as well as sound-reducing,” John goes on.

A large variety of funky options for sound reduction “We target sound engineers rather than architects directly when marketing this product. Architects usually have thousands of options at their fingertips already, whereas sound engineers are often contracted to provide a specialist solution. We try to offer them a product that not only meets the stringent requirements but also gives them the flexibility to fit it into a high design spec.” The range is available in standard, oval and ripple finishes, which give varying levels of sound diffusion. “We’re seeing our installations going into an everincreasing range of environments from residential to hospitality as people recognise the benefits of sound reduction,” he elaborates. “Restaurants, for instance, can dramatically improve ambiance by dampening sound – providing diners with a more private experience. It’s amazing how well it works in social areas. “There was a time when thick, big base traps were


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the norm. We’ve made the options slimmer and sexier. It’s a New Age solution to an old problem. There’s also a lot of flexibility over other options. The panels can be adjusted on site and the fabric can be changed on site as needed too. Other products have to be fabricated off site and if they don’t fit, there’s a problem.”

Getting meshed

Not to be outdone, Guy takes charge of the tour and leads us through an intriguing maze of hanging links, which turn out to be the new kid on the block. Kaynemaile polycarbonate mesh is a UV-resistant chain-link screen that can be used to enclose spaces or as a wall cladding. “It’s been performance tested in a range of conditions and offers very good longevity,” Guy elaborates. “It’s light so you don’t need a heavy substructure to support it, yet it’s strong enough to compete with stainless steel mesh. In fact, it’s even been used in security barriers, as well as high traffic areas such as airports, or safety-sensitive areas like balustrades. It’s incredibly flexible and you can cut shapes and holes wherever you like, so architects can go wild. “We’re really enthusiastic about this product because it’s aesthetically exciting while being functional. We think it’s going to be the sort of material that inspires designers. Flexible walling doesn’t have to be about drywalling – which everyone thinks is the only option. Kaynemaile can be used to create pause areas and meeting pods in public areas. It’s an excellent separator and


a good way to give privacy without building a wall.”

In the loo

Speaking of privacy, glass cladding is being used more and more in areas such as toilets, Guy tells us. “By putting an image on a piece of frameless glass and using it as a toilet partition you create a ‘happy space’ in a utilitarian area. A lot of loos in Europe are clad with glass. They’re also using different colours and underlighting on vanities. “It doesn’t get broken because glass is a funny medium – people treat it with more respect because they’re a little afraid of it, so they don’t abuse it,” he smiles. “It’s also hygienic and easy to clean. Vandalism isn’t a problem because marks can easily be wiped off.” The fixed and demountable glass cladding is constructed with toughened glass to meet safety requirements. “This makes it a little harder to work with because there’s no room for error, and local contractors don’t always work square,” Guy admits. “However the benefits are numerous. Apart from being beautiful, the demountable option offers incredible flexibility and can be moved whenever necessary, which is great for commercial spaces looking to refresh their look.” Similar products include privacy screens in urinals. “These free-form screens are made of fully recycled materials. You can specify any shape or size with thousands of finishes and a minimum order of one. The manufacturer is a company with a strong social conscience; they only use renewable materials, such as grass, bamboo etc, in the manufacture.”

Restaurants, for instance, can dramatically improve ambiance by dampening sound Space optimisers

As an alternative to glass, the imported Zenotyle range is light-weight, strong and available in many colours. “It’s great for compact living areas because it can be used as a decorative finish for concealment of ugly areas,” Guy says. “It’s also good for backsplashes, cupboard doors…you name it.” Walls too can be given a touch of pizzazz with Varia lightbox systems. “The boxes have only a tiny 3mm breakline – they provide a very effective finish for massive lightboxes on feature walls.” As we finally reach the end of the showroom, the guys gather to review what we’ve seen. “We have a lot to offer, but we’re very careful to put the right product in the right area,” emphasises Guy. John agrees, adding: “We also like to make our products multitask. Since they’re so flexible, it’s easy to use them in unconventional situations, like applying 3-form Chroma on staircases.” Dean, on his way to lead the next group through his cladding section, ends off with, “And you’re unlikely to leave us without finding something unique and perfectly suited to your needs.” Dean Armstrong, Ergosystem Flexible Walling Solutions, Tel. 011 801 9560,

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On the Surface Although cladding is viewed by many as a trend that has taken off relatively recently, the practice of improving surface appearance with a coating of something more glamorous, or hard-wearing, is not new.


hen “Architect &Specificator” speaks to Paul Carnell at AMT Composites, he tells us that an example of the company’s simulated cladding system has been languishing at Canary Wharf near Harrods in London for over 25 years. “It’s got a bit of moss on it, but it’s still going strong,” he laughs.

It’s got a bit of moss on it, but it’s still going strong

Paul Carnell (right) with Brian from Dudley & Sons (manufacturer of the dome at Montecasino)

Strange materials

Having assumed that this product was new to the market, our first question was: “So you’re cladding with strange materials?” Paul chuckles as he sets us straight. “We manufacture a material called M1, which is essentially a modified gypsum crystals and specially formulated acrylic resin composite which, when mixed can be laminated with glass reinforcement fabric to produce incredibly thin – about 3-5mm thick laminate – but is tough enough for either interior or exterior applications.” Not only is the product not new, but it has also been used in a large number of high profile projects. “I think they used about 60 tons of it at Montecasino,” says Paul, describing six metre columns complete with Corinthian caps, as well as a dome measuring four by four metres, all constructed using M1. “It’s also been specified at Canal Walk in Cape Town and at Protea Place in Sandton.”

Multiple benefits

Designers love the stuff for a variety of reasons. It’s light-weight and easy to handle, yet simulates the effect of materials that can be extremely difficult to work with. “It can take the place of a reinforced concrete surface, without all the associated management complications,” Paul tells us. The Protea Place project shows how M1 is able to replicate the textures and patterns of a multitude of high-end materials

It is also able to replicate the textures and patterns of a multitude of high-end materials. “You can get

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so many finishes with it,” Paul elaborates. “By using metal powders or crushed white marble in your primary coat, and then buffing the surface, you can mimic the effect of these materials, or any other you might choose. For instance, we were involved in a project in Fredman Drive in Sandton, where zinc was mixed into the first layer of M1 and once buffed gave a really interesting effect. It looks like zinc, but it’s really just an acrylic laminate with a zinc surface finish.”

You can create a finish that is very difficult to tell apart from the real thing The material also boasts low toxicity and doesn’t release harmful gases if burned. “It passes all of the international safety tests with flying colours,” Paul says with pride. “To make it even more appealing, it can be demoulded in just three or four hours, and cures overnight.” He warns, however, that some contractors make the mistake of assuming it’s stable immediately after demoulding and the result is that sheets may warp if leaned up against a wall to dry completely.

About 60 tons of the product was used at Montecasino


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Realistic results

While many designers avoid the use of laminates for fear of creating a ‘cheap’ effect, Paul assures us that an experienced installer can achieve incredibly realistic results. “We offer a full range of fillers and pigments, and with a little skill, these can be used to create some fantastic work. The material naturally has a cold touch, so it simulates stone and rock incredibly well. Some contractors replicate tiled surfaces using the material, saving considerable expense and time in terms of materials and time involved.” And, with a little creativity and attention to detail, it’s also possible to recreate finishes such as wood. “By creating a mould from the wood surface and then applying paint techniques, you can create a finish that is very difficult to tell apart from the real thing.” Add to this a strong, durable finish, and a lifespan that has reached up to forty years in accelerated tests, M1 looks set to stick around for as long as its natural counterparts – if not longer. Paul Carnall, AMT Composites, Tel: (011) 392-4232, Email:,


From the Desk July/Aug. 2012 and AAAMSA Buyers Guide 2012/13: SANS10400-XA, Energy usage in buildings: Thanks for very interesting and helpful information.

My honest opinion is that the new energy saving regulations are fine in theory, but in practice it is a big ask to make it work. Looking at the example house plan (Buyers Guide, pg5) I cannot help wondering how much the architectural professional is paid for doing such drawings, how many of such drawings he does and how he affords to acquire CPD credits, PI insurance and to pay fees.  How much it costs him to keep up his office?  Does his wife also work to help out on living costs?  Maybe he stays with his parents.  How many architectural professionals are being paid the recommended fees?  Is he/she also appointed to do site administration and who is responsible to see that the building is built to the new stringent SANS10400?  Who is doing such building work and who controls quality on site?  Who is doing regular evaluation of building work and who signs payment and completion certificates?  Who will be forcing the builder, if he still exists, to rectify defects during the latent defect liability period? One more thing, 99% of houses, not complying with energy efficiency, are probably designed by draughts-people. They are the main reason we have all this strict legislation in the first place. Get off the backs of architects! Regards, Schalk Pienaar, Pr.Arch. 1070, Email:

Dear Mr Pienaar

Thank you for your response. We do believe that the new legislation favours the Professional Architects. There is a distinct move towards making the person who applies for building approval, responsible for the entire quality control of the Building construction.

Regulations AZ4 and A2 (applicable since 1 October 2008) in our opinion reflect this trend. This is also reinforced in Form 1 where the person who applies for building approval commits to adherence to SANS 10400 and/or rational design/assessment. Who better to check compliance with the intended design at the end of the contract than the original person applying for building approval? We believe once the regulations are imbedded, the opportunities for the Professional Architect to gain his/her rightful place are unparalleled. Kind Regards Hans A Schefferlie, Executive Director, The AAAMSA Group

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Can you Handle it?

The humble handle has much to add in terms of providing a finishing touch to a space, be it a kitchen, a bathroom, the entrance to a building, or simply on the furniture used in a room.


andles have the advantage of giving the designer an opportunity to update a room without implementing a complete renovation. One of the fastest ways to give a kitchen a facelift is to change the handles and hinges used on the cupboard doors. With this in mind, “Architect & Specificator” took a look at what’s happening abroad in the field of architectural hardware design. Typically, hardware such as handles take up 5% of a building’s budget, which can amount to a significant sum. While some choose to cut this to minimise costs, savvy stylists recognise hardware as an important contributor to the final impression a room conveys.

Custom design is finding increasing favour Tailor-made

Custom design is finding increasing favour as more and more decorators offer clients a look tailored specifically for their needs. While this isn’t always viable in large commercial installations, it works well in residential applications where fewer accessories are required. Bespoke designs can take almost any form, from natural themes to craft items, or merely embossing monograms into doorknobs or pulls. In office installations, corporate elements can be incorporated into hardware to reflect a brand identity. For home design, an updated look can be achieved simply by hanging bead or crystal craftwork from door knobs. In many cases, hybridised versions of different styles are being adopted, with designers referring to ‘coastal contemporary’ or ‘mountain modern’ in an effort to describe the final result.

Old school

Just as retro looks have infiltrated interior design and architecture in a modern take on classic looks, so handles are often influenced by their antique precursors. In many instances, however, rather than being a faithful reproduction of an antique look, designers are opting to reinterpret them. Materials such as glass, brass and copper are re-emerging in new guises, often bringing a quirky flavour to ultra-modern interiors.

Some designers turn to history for inspiration. This handle and door from the Ulu Camii in Cizre, in Southeastern Anatolia, were crafted in the 12th Century

Organics are also finding favour as many designers turn to nature for their inspiration. This drive is reflected in flowing lines and circular patterns, as well as the inclusion of items such as flowers, leaves and water drops in a more literal turn to the environment. Materials are often unconventional,

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such as wood and even stone. Some manufacturers have responded by combining traditional techniques, such as lost wax casting and sand casting, with high tech manufacturing equipment to produce precisely engineered hardware with a traditional and natural look and feel. The trend is moving away from manufactured, finished appearances toward living finishes like bronze and patinas, as well as other organic materials which evolve naturally over time, allowing designs to to reflect the living and changing aspects of the environment. Organic styles also emerge in the form of ergonomic designs which are increasingly turning to the human body for guidance. A handle incorporating the natural indentations of a human grip is comfortingly familiar in hand. Similarly, materials that are pleasant to the touch can add an extra element to the simple experience of entering a room.

The good impression created by a slick design can be ruined by tacky functioning

Security brings in biometrics, but style remains an issue

Smooth operator

Just as materials and styles can convey a sense of luxury, so too can the mechanism of the handle. While door opening was once achieved by basic doorknobs, now levers are in favour, allowing less able-bodied occupants more ease of use. Smooth functioning is invariably an indication of quality and designers take this into account when specifying hardware. The good impression created by a slick design can be ruined by tacky functioning. In some instances, designers can opt to forego handles altogether by using soft touch-opening systems. Security is another area in which handles are continually developing. As safety becomes more important, specifiers are paying more attention to elements such as master key systems and biometrics. Sophisticated security systems introduce an additional complication as access control falls under the realm of IT management. Nevertheless, design specs are still paramount and manufacturers have their work cut out coming


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up with products that offer optimum safety without compromising aesthetics.

Something completely different…

Of course, as in all design, some will always explore uncharted territory, and handles are no different. The LEDoor Handle was designed by Kun-hee Kim, Kei Shimizu and Nguyen-vu Dang for the 2011 Spark Awards. The handle is simple to use and charges itself using the kinetic energy generated when the door is opened or closed. Inactive by day, at night it emits a soft glow to help guide occupants to the door. Italian designer Gionatta Gatto’s door handle also provides unusual functionality by allowing users to clip reminders and ‘to do’ lists to the mechanism. Meanwhile, textile designer, Marie Rouillon uses fabrics to introduce a tactile aspect to what she considers to be a world that is losing touch with its senses. Sources:,

Design takes a leaf out of Mother Nature’s book

Ergonomic options incorporate touch-friendly handles

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Something for Everyone Finding solutions for the needs of a wide variety of markets may be a tall order in these days of specialisation and niche products, but some companies have learned to corner the market by broadening their horizons.


s one of South Africa’s largest manufacturers of steel and aluminium doors, windows and frames, Duro Pressings has found a way to offer a range of products that is comprehensive and yet diverse enough for both high and low-end markets.

Steely stuff

John Lamb

According to John Lamb, chief sales and marketing Officer of Duro, steel has numerous advantages ranging from durability and strength, to energy efficiency and low fire hazard. “Steel structures maintain their strength and do not deteriorate or warp like aged timber and concrete. Another great aspect is that it is very strong and flexible, making it ideal for building houses in windy, unfavourable weather areas,” says John.

Architects are able to design in almost any size or colour With strength in mind, many opt for Duro’s high security steel entrance doors. However, the company has also used the material in its range of products for low budget and RDP housing. For


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instance, Duro’s Cliscoe inner and outer windows require no sill, lintel or plastering, making them cost effective and easy to install. Another Duro product boasting cost-efficiency and easy installation for the low-cost market is the Cliplock doorframe. This self-assembly system comes complete with removable pin and hinges, as well as adjustable striker plates. They’re flatpacked for ease of transport and storage, and available in standard sizes in red oxide, galvanized or prepainted powder-coated finish.

About aluminium

On the other hand, the benefits of aluminium are equally appealing. “At Duro, we offer aluminium windows and patio doors to meet different performance and budget requirements,” John continues. “Both collections offer products that are designed to be as energy efficient as they are affordable. “They’re also a low-maintenance choice that’s ideal for moderate climates,” he says, adding that versatile frame colours and divided lite options are also available. “The windows and patio doors in our collection are built to be exceptionally durable, and these hardworking windows are made to consistently resist rust and mildew.”


Like steel, aluminium is also known for its strength and John adds that this makes it ideal for doors and windows too. “Window and door areas are seen as weak entry points for burglars,” he warns. Strengthening these points can be an effective deterrent to opportunistic crime.

Opening doors

Duro’s patio doors, in particular, have garnered popularity in the local market. Glazed with safety glass they’re fitted with long-life rollers for smooth gliding, and aluminium extrusions are built to be corrosion resistant. Additional hardware comes in the form of protective tread plates and night latches.

aesthetics and brighter windows. The sections are also pre-painted and powder-coated for corrosion resistance and low maintenance.

More to offer

Having perfected the art of door and window supply, Duro has turned its attention to a variety of hardware including garage doors motors, gate openers, automation systems, compact storage systems and awnings.

It is possible to be a jack of many trades

Apart from its standard ranges, the Duro Designer Range is known for its system of cold-rolled galvanised steel sections, fittings and gaskets for making windows, doors and doorframes. In addition to being air-tight, water-tight, strong, fire-resistant and durable, the products have drawn attention for their flexibility – architects are able to design windows and doors in almost any size or colour.

Ultimately, Duro Pressings hasn’t taken on a role as an industry expert in a specialised sector, and it appears to be paying off. Each of its ranges is aimed at providing value for money, regardless of the application. “When cost matters, you don’t have to compromise on quality,” John emphasises. By choosing the right products using appropriate materials, and targeting the correct markets with effective solutions, it seems that it is possible to be a jack of many trades without losing focus.

Cold-rolled tubular steel provides enhanced strength while still allowing finer sections for uncluttered

John Lamb, Duro Pressings, Tel: (010) 590-9060, Email:,

Freedom of choice

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All Fired Up The issue of fire protection is invariably a hot topic. In an industry where margins for error are non-existent and small mistakes can result in big losses – often involving human lives – specialists are inclined to take their jobs very seriously.


rchitect & Specificator” speaks to Leo Slootmans, CEO of Firespec Systems, a company with four decades of experience in supply, installation and maintenance of fire protection and security systems. “There are numerous challenges in the industry at the moment,” Leo begins. From a business perspective, the main issue is the shortage of work available. “There’s a lot less work going around,” he continues. “Generally you’re working with building contractors, which means we have to square away the contract from the outset. Too much responsibility is being put onto the builders’ shoulders, which can be problematic.

Too much responsibility is being put onto the builders’ shoulders, which can be problematic In the hot seat

“Also, we’re a finishing trade – one of the last to get in. If a project is running behind schedule, which is not unusual, it’s up to us to play catchup.” Here, Leo’s concern is clearly safety-related; it’s not ideal to rush through a process that could impact people’s lives. Compounding the problem of time urgency are the recently revised Building Regulations – specifically the T-section, which deals with fire requirements. “The new regulations are taken very seriously and are being strongly policed,” he emphasises. “This bodes well for occupants, however it adds a new workload for building managers, who must ensure compliance.”

Active and passive

Leo explains that fire protection generally includes a combination of both active and passive systems. “Active systems include detection and suppression, and are designed to detect and then reduce fire spread, allowing time for occupants to escape and notify fire services.” Depending on the nature of the business, the job may be as simple as installing a fire alarm. Evacuation, however, is crucial – while alarms may be sufficient for smaller buildings, in bigger ones it may be necessary to install voice PA-type evac systems to get the message across. The evac system is often very different from a PA system, Leo explains.

Leo Slootmans, Firespec

Suppression is achieved in a variety of ways, such as oxygen starvation and cooling or interruption of chemical reactions, possibly by flooding or application of clean agent gas or carbon dioxide. Fire suppression zones may cover areas where fire could compromise the safety of other potentiallyhazardous areas (eg. transformer rooms) or where damage can be financially damaging, such as data storage rooms and computer centres. In terms of passive systems, methods generally involve basic precautions. “Passive prevention has always been around,” Leo explains. “It’s based on the philosophy of compartmentalisation to stop fire spread in or out of an area, so it involves sealing between compartments, installing fire boards, walls and curtains, sealing areas where pipes or cables run through walls, as well as coating structural steel. Ultimately, these, along with suppression and prevention methods, form part of the fire plan for the building.”

Clamping down

Back to the topic of regulations, Leo explains that stringent monitoring is making it increasingly difficult for ordinary contractors to implement fire plans. “Any new building or renovation must have its fire plan approved by a professional registered with the Council. In the old days, anyone could devise a fire plan. Now with the clamp down, we can draft one but it has to be signed off by a qualified professional. “This is where the real changes have come into play. I’ve seen instances where people have paid a lot of good money for a consultancy service and then end up spending even more because the fire

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department won’t accept the plans.”

Fighting fire

He adds that the dearth of suitably qualified professionals can sometimes slow down the process. “In many instances, fire fighters are leaving the fire department and becoming consultants, which is acceptable as long as they take their qualifications further. However, just having fire fighting qualifications isn’t enough to sign off fire plans. Often electrical engineers become involved because it falls under their scope. But some engineers are not fire specialists and often the best solution is when installer and consultant cooperate”. According to Leo, building owners also need to be more aware of requirements. “In the case of new buildings, it’s fairly obvious, but if a building owner wants to upgrade a system, this also has to be signed off, which means extra expense and possible delays. We need to clarify exactly what needs approval – small changes are also important.

Any new building or renovation must have its fire plan approved by a professional registered with the Council Managing maintenance

“In addition, the issue of maintenance is a whole can of worms on its own, specifically around the Cape. You can have a good installation but if it’s not maintained it won’t remain efficient. Facilities managers need to show due diligence in choosing the right maintenance company for the job.” In this regard, Firespec has earned its stripes, having won contracts to maintain a number of high profile buildings, including Cape Town International Airport and the UCT campuses. “We’re very proud of these accounts because these clients take fire safety very seriously. In the long-term, a good maintenance contract saves budget,” Leo assures us. “For UCT we maintain the building systems and access control – covering active and passive systems. These systems cover all campuses, and are controlled centrally.” Central control effectively minimises the additional workload placed on building managers mentioned earlier, providing incentive to keep systems up to code and ensuring occupant safety. “I realise that it may take a while for some members of the industry to grow accustomed to the new regulations, but it really is in the best interests of all concerned,” Leo ends off. Leo Slootmans, Firespec, Tel. 021 685 1111, Fax. 021 685 1177, Email., Website:

Structural steel in stairwell treated with 2-hour fire rated Intumescent paint

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Objects of Desire The FAB range attracted collaborations with other big names

‘Smeg’ might not be an obvious choice for glamour brand-naming, but it made sense at the time: Smalterie Metallurgiche Emilane Guastalla (Guastalla Emilia Enamel Works). Although the name is associated with high-end luxury goods, Smeg has its roots in humble soil.


ounded by Vittorio Bertazzoni in the town of Guastalla in northern Italy, three generations later, the company is still run by the Bertazzoni family, who remain true to Vittorio’s original vision.

What’s to like?

So why has the brand become so sought-after? Some simply enjoy the brag-appeal, but true fans will tell you that it’s the way the brand marries technology with style in a way that reflects the Italian love of la dolce vita. At the heart of the design ethic is a drive to create products that work with both their surroundings and the people who use them. Smeg’s in-house design team is all about detail. Finding the balance between performance, aesthetics, environmental efficiency and an evaluation of needs and functions is the starting point of the process. They tackle this responsibility with the assistance of international experts; architects such as Guido Canali, Mario Bellini, the Piano Design studio, Marc Newson and Giancarlo Candeago have all put their stamp on the brand. Beyond beauty, Smeg’s laboratories constantly develop methods to keep products in line with the needs of contemporary living. In addition to aesthetics, considerations such as durability, safety, and

flexibility are all part of the mix. Constant testing during production keeps these quality standards consistently high.


Unlike many other technologically-advanced ranges, the aim of Smeg designers is to offer products that are easy to use, providing user-friendly interfaces and programming solutions. Becoming an ITspecialist in order to use your stove is a complication that most homeowners would rather avoid. Other considerations are more practical, such as fingerprint-proof stainless steel surfaces on items prone to getting grubby. On a less serious note, Smeg appliances have found favour in some unconventional circles too. In 2009, sixteen 50s retro fridges were used to house ‘fooding’ exhibits by numerous world-renowned culinary artists at the Vendome Luxury Show in Paris. Art followed unlikely themes such as ‘Chocolate Floors’ and ‘Bread Handbags’. Elsewhere, artists have found inspiration in the FABs 50’s retro, coloured refrigerator quirky bubble doors, adorning them with everything from poetry to pop-art.

In the kitchen at parties

It’s no surprise that the kitchen was the focal point of Smeg’s original range; Italians are renowned for good food, convivial company and a lust for life. Perhaps by gathering around the latest gleaming ovenware, the rest of us can imagine a rowdy crowd of happy wine-quaffing, pasta-chomping family members all ruled over by a stern but devoted ‘Nonna’. “Mangiare, mangiare, you looka too thin!”

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Polished Concrete Range The increasing popularity of polished concrete in the South African decorative market has prompted AfriSam, in partnership with concrete product supplier Concreate, to introduce AfriSam Polishable Concrete to its Readymix range. AfriSam Polishable Concrete is a specially designed range of polishable concrete ideal for use in the retail, decorative, industrial, commercial and corporate markets. Concreate director Peter Norton explains that as it is polished,

AfriSam Polishable Concrete becomes increasingly hard wearing, while its surface also becomes light-reflective, making it an environmentally friendly product that requires less cleaning and maintenance than existing products. Most concrete is not polishable owing to factors such as chemical admixtures, cement and stone content and the type of stone used. “AfriSam Polishable Concrete, which is produced locally, can not only be polished, but also stained using the Colour Juice range of water-

based floor stains, available through Concreate, to create a custom colour finish to suit any taste,” explains Peter. AfriSam Polishable Concrete has already been used on a number of projects in South Africa, including a 2 500 m2 warehouse for Equity Pharmaceuticals in Pretoria. Concreate, Peter Norton, Tel: (011) 7045557, Fax: (011) 462-1456, Email: peter@, Web:

Woodstock exchange Three neighbouring industrial buildings in Albert Road, Woodstock are being redeveloped into a trendy, upmarket mixed use complex to be known as The Woodstock Exchange. The three buildings were acquired late last year at a cost of R20,5million by Dormell Properties which was also behind the redevelopment of the hugely popular Old Biscuit Mill which is close by. The redevelopment, which is costing a further R17million, will result in a total GLA of around 11 420 square metres and a combination of studio, retail and office space. Barry Harlen of Dormell Properties says the development comprises two front buildings which are joined to form the front block with the third block positioned behind them. “We are striving to create a communitytype feel to the development and there will be art installations throughout, an area to lock up bicycles, showers for those who cycle to work, great communal areas for tenants to share, an ATM, restaurants, coffee shop and the like so that it will be a great place for like-minded, creative tenants to work and share their ideas. Rabie Property, Maggie Rowley, Tel: (021) 550-7000, Web:


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Affordable Glass Polishing Machines Smaller contractors and shopfitters in South Africa can benefit from a highly-efficient and cost-effective range of glass polishing machines that are exclusively available in the local market through Diamond Products. Director Brian Clark points out that the company’s range varies between R60 000 and R180 000 in price, which is far more cost effective than the industry standard glass polishing machines that are currently imported from Europe. “Entry-level contractors

and shopfitters will particularly benefit from the range, as they do not have to make a substantial investment in the machinery, and can experience a return-on-investment within a matter of months, thanks to the efficiency, simplicity and affordability of the range,” he explains. Diamond Products currently imports two models of glass polishing machines to the local market, namely; the micro straight glass grinding machine and the horizontal straight glass grinding

He highlights the fact that horizontal straight glass grinding machine is designed for glass processing, and can be used for grinding and polishing various types of straight edge glass, including decoration and furniture glass, structural glass, and non-frame door glass. “The horizontal glass polishing system is an entry level machine that is designed for smaller pieces of glass, and eliminates the need for the contractor to send the raw glass out to a sub-contractor. This substantially reduces overhead costs and turnaround times,” he explains. Diamond Products, Brian Clark/Darryl Gray, Tel: : (011) 552-8310, Fax: (011) 552-8312 Email:, Web: www.

Exact Beam Structure Vereeniging-based Portal Frame Structures is a division in the Proroof Steel Group, and was established in July 2012 in order to fill a gap in the local market, which currently provides users with limitations in terms of column and beam sizes, dimensions and specifications. Their beamline machine is unique to the local market, where building projects are often required to make use of beams that are over-specified, simply because an exact specification is not available. By introducing this new machine, users can purchase high-quality steel beam structures to exact requirements, thereby ensuring substantial savings and improved turnaround times. The company provides a value-added service offering throughout the design,

installation and erection stages of all types of steel portal frame structures to customers in the construction and retail sectors of the South African market.

Portal Frame Structures, Louis Visser, Tel: (016) 450-5800, Email:, Web:

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machine. Diamond Products co-director Darryl Gray adds, “The micro-straight glass grinding machine is the smallest vertical glass grinding machine in the world, and is ideally-suited to grinding straight edge glass that is between 1 mm and 8 mm in thickness, and up to 25 mm in diameter.”


Materials Ethic According to Westville based, Evolution Architects, which specialises in retail architecture and green buildings, the imaginative extension to Ballito Lifestyle Centre changed a former ‘strip centre' layout scheme into an attractive ‘lifestyle' destination that cleverly extended and complemented the existing centre with an exciting sequence of environments. Evolution set out to integrate its new design with the centre’s original “street scene” concept, providing an ambience that was “more tastefully contemporary than fashionably modern”. Some changes were made to existing finishes and colours so that the new segment blended with the old. Architect Raewyn Gowar explaines that Corobrik pavers were used for

the covered pedestrian walkways that form part of the outdoor shopping mall. “We were looking for a durable, hardwearing finish with aesthetic appeal that would provide some texture and colour to contrast with the main building which has smooth refined finishes and shades of white, grey and black as a colour pallet.”

was herringbone which reinforces a strong diagonal, giving the optical illusion of a narrow width being wider than it really is”.

According to Raewyn, the red colouring of the burgundy piazza pavers appealed to the architects as it was in keeping with the rest of the building’s true-tomaterials ethic. “The piazza pavers were selected as opposed to the standard pavers as the width of the paved area was narrow. The format of the Piazza pavers was therefore suitable for the design proportions. The pattern selected

Raewyn adds that the choice of the Piazza paver for the Ballito Lifestyle Centre was not restricted to aesthetics. On the practical side, Piazza pavers are durable and easy to clean and therefore make for practical floor finishes.

Because the Piazza paver is a thinner and not as wide as standard pavers, it provided an interesting effect when used and was becoming increasingly popular.

Corobrik, Mike Ingram, Tel: (031) 560-3111, Fax: ( 031) 565-1532, Email: mike.ingram@, Web:

Walkways at the Ballito Lifestyle centre are paved in Corobrik’s Burgundy Piazza Paver with complementary header course in charcoal Corocobble pavers. While aesthetic considerations underpinned the choice of pavement materials the architect selected the piazza paver as an environmentally responsible choice – the pavers being manufactured from natural materials and clean burning fuel, having assured longevity and offering ease of maintenance, reusability and if ever necessary recyclability as well.

Several advantages

Since its inception, the ongoing message from the Southern African Light Steel Frame Building Association (SASFA) has been that the light steel frame (LSF) construction method is suitable for all types of building, from residential to commercial and office buildings. . The latest residential architectural masterpiece in the Xanadu Eco Park overlooking Brickwork was used for the elevator shaft the Hartebeespoort Dam in the North West Province is a framing for the construction above stunning vindication of this claim. the surface bed and took it one step AIF Design Architects’ Cobus du Ples- further by introducing a 100mm air gap in-between the outer and inner sis concurs, saying that not only did layer steel frames. This not only gave they want an appropriate aesthetic us the advantage of the air barrier, but for the location but that the ongoing also gave us the aesthetic advantage energy consumption of the house was of 350mm thick walls,” says Cobus. It a major priority. also made installation of services easy “To this end we chose light steel – plumbing, electrical and the central


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vacuuming system.

He adds that the main challenges were the cost of construction and the long construction period, and in both cases light steel framing proved to be the best option as there were significant savings on the construction time and costs.

Cobus says that LSFB has an excellent future in the high-end property market. “There are several advantages from an architect’s point of view. Cost is reduced, speed of construction increased, insulation qualities and energy efficiencies incomparable and, importantly, the end product looks exactly like the CAD drawings – perfect corners, straight walls and excellent finishes all round.” SASFA, John Barnard, Tel: (011) 726-6111, Email:, Web:


With more than 150 offices worldwide, Assa Abloy South Africa is one of the largest local lock groups with a combined track record of close to two centuries in the South African market since the early 2000s. Globally-renowned Besam door systems boasts 50 years of successful manufacture with its comprehensive, local, reliable, energy efficient and safety conscious products. “ We suppor t Besam systems with exceptional workmanship, professional fitment and exemplary after sales service. Some of South Africa’s most prestigious hotels, shopping centres, malls, motor car showrooms, banks and airports are included in our client portfolio”, says André Aiton, managing director, Assa Abloy Entrance Systems.

Keeping Open

But Andre´ says that no matter how good the quality of a door system, regular maintenance pays a crucial role as it improves the lifespan of doors and prevents costly call-outs and as well as the inconvenience and embarrassment of doors that that are not operating.

“We are customer focused and with 2000 hours of training collectively, professional and certified Assa Abloy technical teams are equipped with the necessary knowledge to maintain all types of automatic entrance systems and are on 24/7 standby to assist

customers with rapid service support, advice and repairs.” Assa Abloy, André Aiton, Tel: (011) 766-5000, Fax: (011) 766-3573, Email: Web:

The Real Deal Construction companies no longer have an excuse for buying aggregates and sand from illegal mining operations thanks to a newly-developed Web portal that allows buyers to check if the source of their goods is legal and registered with the Aggregate and Sand Producers Association of South Africa (Aspasa). The Aspasa website has an interactive map of all the regions of southern Africa showing registered members. The website contains all the necessary contact information of the producer, and their location. In addition it guides buyers of sand and aggregates on

Department of Mineral Resources guidelines, nor do they pay any attention to rehabilitating the environment when they have finished mining an area. “By comparison our members work within the boundaries of regulations and legislation governing the safe, sustainable and responsible mining of these products and protect and rehabilitate the environment as part of their mandate,” say Nico Pienaar,” director of Aspasa.

Nico Pienaar

what to expect from these suppliers. “Illegal aggregate and sand mining operations cause untold harm to the environment because unscrupulous operators do not work within the

Aspasa, Nico Pienaar, Tel: (011) 791-3327, Fax: 086 647 8034 Email:, Web:

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Terrific Tilt-up The construction of Newcastle Mall has been completed by Aveng Grinaker-LTA. managing director Grahame McCaig explains that this challenging time-frame was achieved by incorporating the innovative “tilt-up” construction process into the project. At Newcastle Mall, tilt-up was used for all perimeter and loading yard walls. Grahame states, “The client selected tilt-up as it is much quicker than conventional building processes and the building was completely closed up in a relatively short period of time,” he notes. “Tilt-up construction consists of two stages, the casting of the panels on surface beds or sacrificial beds and lifting of the panels into position. It

is a process that requires skill and precision, but since it eliminates many of the requirements of conventional brickwork, such as access scaffolding, tilt-up is worth the effort.” Lower maintenance costs are a further benefit of tilt-up. “There is virtually no long-term maintenance required of unpainted tilt-up walls, making this method far cheaper in the long run than conventional plastered walls that have to be painted and maintained on a regular basis over time. When lifted, the tilt-up panels are basically a finished product.” Aveng Grinaker-LTA, Melanie Esterhuizen, Tel: (011) 578-6000, Email:, Web:

Spare the environment Water and glass processing go hand in hand, therefore measures need to be put in place to help better utilise water when it comes to polishing, beveling and drilling of glass. For this reason, Bohle Glass Equipment (Pty) Ltd has introduced a range of sedimentation devices designed specifically to not just save water and the environment, but also to save on costs by eliminating the need to replace the water in the machinery tanks weekly. Fully automatic (Sedimentor 0.3 and 1.0) coolant (water) cleaning systems that use powder flocculent for a decentralised solution for connection to a glass processing machine, signifi-


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cantly improve the processing quality of the glass, especially that of the polishing. Longer service life of tools, greatly reduced cleaning requirements of the machine purifying system and efficient flow sedimentation due to container design allowing for minimal maintenance, are further benefits. Batch cleaning of the coolant with liquid can be undertaken during breaks or post production. Efficient and low consumption of flocculent produces virtually clear water. Sludge drainage is achieved via a filter bag which can be exchanged easily. Bohle Glass Equipment, Tel: (011) 792 6430


Trellidor Rollerstyle aluminium shutters are the perfect solution to creating ultra-secure areas within homes and commercial buildings. They fit neatly into a passage door space and roll up into a shutter box, completely out of the way when not needed. They operate far more quietly and smoothly than steel versions, so are ideal for homes and upmarket offices.

Quick and secure

The aluminium slats that create these shutters look good front and back, so there is no ugly ‘wrong’ side. These shutters assist with internal climate control when fitted to external doors and windows, shutting out inclement weather, high winds and excessive heat or cold. Automated Trellidor Rollerstyle aluminium shutters open and close at the touch of a button, either on a wall panel or using a portable hand-held remote control. They can be linked to a ‘smart’ home or office’s centralised electronic control system and/or linked to a timer. Trellidor, Tel: (031) 508-0800, Fax: (031) 507-2129, Email: Web:

Winning New Projects Rietveld Architects, a NY-based architecture firm known for its large-scale international projects, acquired its Objet 3D Printer and now creates architectural models in just a few hours, a fraction of the two–month turnaround time it required previously. Rietveld Architects has also discovered that the Objet 3D Printer can help secure new projects. The Objet 3D Printer was a fairly straight foward choice for the architectural firm. "We were particularly impressed by the ability of this system to quickly produce highly detailed, accurate models with minimal office clean-up," Rijk Rietveld, the firm's partner, comments. "Other technologies produced brittle models and just didn’t have the fine detail of the Objet solution”. Soon after installing the Objet 3D Printer, the architects discovered that the 3D

Printer also boosted sales. According to Piet Meijs, a senior associate at Rietveld Architects, the Objet prototyping capabilities have helped the firm secure new projects. "There is still very much a 'wow' factor. A potential client asked us to produce a completely re-designed plan because the programme changed. Within two weeks we put on the table a 1:400 model of a new design.” Using Objet 3D printing, highly accurate architectural models can be produced within hours, reflecting the most recent change requests and updates. Clients can view a physical model with the most intricate details, feel confident about the overall design and how it fits with the surroundings, and reach faster decisions. Objet 3D printer, Arita Mattsoff,, Web:

Protection on site UK-based Spraylat International, the manufacturer of Protectapeel temporary peelable protective coatings, has appointed Peelable Coatings as its new distributor in Africa. Protectapeel is a weather resistant, peelable protective coating for protecting a number of non-porous substrates. The liquid coating is applied by spray or roller and dries to form a skintight plastic film that will protect the surface during construction or re-fit. Prior to project handover, the coating is simply peeled by hand leaving the surface looking and feeling like new. Protectapeel is a water-based, environmentally friendly solution that can safely be safely disposed of, using no harmful chemicals. Peelable Coatings, Andre Blignaut, Tel: (011) 888-4642, Email:, Web:

Architect & Specificator

September/October 2012



Dulux will soon be launching the Flourish, a symbol of its inspirational journey of “Adding Colour to People’s Lives” across the globe. As part of the world’s number one paint company, AkzoNobel, Dulux has been on a colourful mission to make the world a more vibrant place, so that people may feel the inspirational and uplifting effects of colour.

With a Flourish

“The Flourish will soon form part of Dulux’s iconography and our vision to create an emotionally powerful and motivating new global Prejay Lalla(Dulux sales and marketing director), Nathalie Sweeney(marketing manager), Bennum van Jaarsveld(brand manager for Central Africa), Jackie van der Berg(channel marketing) and icon so our consum- San-Marie Jacobsz(brand manager) ers, whoever they are colour in the global space. The emotions Malaysia, Indonesia, India, Austria, and wherever they may live in the world, will be inspired it inspires are joy, energy, passion and France, Netherlands, Thailand, South Africa and is still to be launched in to paint with Dulux. This we hope to the stimulation of creativity. achieve through one consistent global Indeed, the journey of inspiring people many more countries to come. message, delivered in one compelling with its new iconography and Flourish Dulux, San-Marie Jacobsz, voice,” explains Dulux master brand of colour began 18 months ago. It has Tel: (011) 861-1000, manager, San-Marie Jacobsz. been a global journey which has touched Fax: (011) 864-6701 , “The Flourish is about renewal and it is a reflection of our true ownership of

the lives of people in countries as far afield as Canada, Sri Lanka, Vietnam,, Web:

Sealcon Systems recently used Mapei epoxy screeds to create an aesthetically-pleasing and durable floor surface at Woolworths’ first Supermarket at Nicolway Shopping Centre in Johannesburg.

resists harsh abrasion, and complies with the national flooring standard prescribed by Woolworths.”

“The trick was to supply a solution that not only looked good, but also catered for heavy foot traffic and the occasional pallet truck,” says Paul Nieuwoudt, marketing manager at Mapei South Africa. “We came up with the Mapefloor 1 320 SL Concept, which features exceptional mechanical strength,


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The application process involved shotblasting the raw concrete surface with a porta pattern, after which, a multilayered system consisting of primers and pigmented silica sands was applied. The final self-levelling epoxy screed with a granular effect was then applied using a trowel to attain an overall thickness of around two to four millimetres. Mapei SA, Candice Santana, Tel: (011) 552-8476, E-mail: Web:

Growthpoint Properties Limited has earned a sought-after 4-Star Green Star SA Office as Built v1 certification for its Lincoln on the Lake office development in Umhlanga, KwaZulu-Natal. This official recognition was awarded by the Green Building Council of South Africa (GBCSA). It’s the first 4-Star As-Built Green Star rating for a multi tenanted office building in South Africa. “Our property portfolio represents our company’s biggest impact on our environment,” explains Growthpoint Properties Regional Head KZN, Greg de Klerk. “Switching off lights and recycling paper are not enough. That’s

why our office team values design, innovation and sustainability. We do this by focusing on our office properties: how we design them, how we build them, and how a green building positively impacts on them.” Growthpoint leads the real estate sector in carbon disclosure in Africa. It’s in the JSE’s Socially Responsible Investment Index (SRI Index) for the third consecutive year for positive environmental, social and economic sustainability practices and corporate governance.

“Designing greener offices means considering the environmental impact of the materials used to make them. From the stone, glass and metal in our designs to the goods used in daily cleaning, our goal is to continue reducing or removing environmentally harmful substances, Greg concludes.” Growthpoint Properties Limited, Rudolf Pienaar, Tel: (011) 944-6000, Fax: 86 679 0031, Email:, Web:

Remnant plate handling The LiSec FlyOver is a revolution in remnant plate handling and efficient glass cutting. The intelligent one-row design of the suction bridge allows it to move diagonally above the entire glass storage area when no glass is being transported. In this way, the bridge will automatically follow the shortest path to the next storage rack, which minimises cycle times and keeps cutting machines working at full capacity. This LiSec innovation offers another revolutionary advantage, besides the significant time savings achieved. The FlyOver renders costly remnant plate storage systems obsolete by transporting remnants back to the glass storage

area and by using the storage racks as remnant plate racks. With the improved ESL/RS cutting table, LiSEC offers a machine that can cut and grind glass sheets in one cycle, enabling the maximum overall process speed. This next-generation cutting table has a new look and brings considerable improvements in cycle times and efficiency. LiSec, Tel: (011) 478-2313, Fax: (011) 431-0973, Web:

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Two Certifications


An assortment of +-35 000m² top quality concrete block pavers, all manufactured by Aveng Manufacturing Infraset, have been used to pave roads, traffic circles and intersections at Midrand’s Blue Hills Country and Equestrian Estate. An upmarket residential property initiative, the estate comprises 270 stands each measuring between 5 000m² and 15 000m². The bulk of the paving material requirement was met by 30 800m² of Construction Products’ Village Cobble which were used to pave the roads at Blue Hills. The remaining paver complement in various textures, finishes and colours were use on the traffic circles, intersections and pavements and comprised: Classic Cobbles; Masonique; Parkay Split; and Cottage Stone. Peter Fielden, a Construction Products sales and marketing manager, says that all intersections and traffic circles were highly detailed and incorporated a mix of paving products. “Classic Cobble pavers were used at the main intersections and traffic circles and these were interspersed with Parkay Split paving and natural rock to create an attractive wagon-wheel effect. Moreover, the Parkay Split pavers were


Architect & Specificator

Rural Effect laid upside down to take advantage of their rough textured finish. “To further enhance the rural effect, all road kerbing was laid flat, ie, on a level with the road verges. Kerbing was constructed by means of in situ concrete and dump rock beam. Apart from enhancing the aesthetic aspect of the development, the combination of

September/October 2012

finishes, textures and colours served to clearly demarcate the roads, traffic circles, intersections, paths, and of course kerbing.” Aveng Manufacturing Infraset, Peter Fielden, Tel: (012) 652-0000, Web:

Weakened handrailings caused by corrosion and damp can cause accidents as well as raise maintenance costs. Andrew Mentis’ stainless steel handrailings improve safety and reduce maintenance. The clean modern lines are attractive and the stanchions offer a variety of standard angles and matching accessories. Bends and closures common to mild steel systems are also available for this stainless steel system. Bends and closures have swaged ends, improving speed of installation and preventing moisture from penetrating into the joints. All manufacturing is undertaken with an eye to ease of installation, without the need for special tools. The smooth satin finish, combined with the selection of grades, offers almost unlimited possibilities for interior and exterior commercial applications. Andrew Mentis, Elaine van Rooyen, Tel : (011) 2553200, Email: Web: www.mentis. The clean modern lines are attractive in any industrial environment.

Into Africa TAL has recently ventured further into Africa in an effort to provide tiling solutions and contribute to infrastructure development in SubSaharan Africa. Key issues that remain critical are the availability of product, including tiles and adhesives. Another factor to consider is that the majority of products required in construction are imported and have long lead times. There are also skills shortages in crucial areas of construction, particularly in the finishing of a building. The company has been expanding into Africa in a slow and systematic basis, first understanding the market demands and then facilitating an appropriate solution. TAL, Gela Ohl, Tel: 0860 000 825, Email:, Web:

Tilt-up Panels storey 700 m 2 showroom, which will also house a sales and marketing office in order to fully highlight the endless creative possibilities that concrete offers in modern day construction. The common perception that concrete is cold and aesthetically-unpleasing is being challenged by Pan Mixers South Africa (PMSA) – the largest supplier of concrete, brick, block and paving making machinery and technology in Africa. The company is currently in the process of constructing a modern, cutting-edge showroom almost entirely from concrete. PMSA marketing and sales manager Quintin Booysen points out that they began construction of their new two-

“The showroom flooring will be completed with HTC Superfloor, an easy-to-maintain polished concrete flooring system that provides the highest shine to the floor surface, by making use of a range of HTC floor grinding machines and accessories,” he explains. Quintin notes that PMSA will be going one step further by using HTC Superfloor to polish a number of concrete pull-up walling panels that will make up the showroom walls and main reception staircase. “A polishing and grinding

machine weighs up to 300 kg and would be impossible to run against a wall. Another option would be to use a hand-held grinding tool, however that would not ensure a precision finish. PMSA plans to polish its precast panels using the HTC Superfloor system, before pulling them up by making use of a tilt-up method,” he continues. This process will be subject to a number of challenges, due to the fact that each panel weighs up to seven tons. “These panels have to be pulled up into the right position, and they need to be positioned in such a way to ensure that they are not just decorative, but also that they are structural elements of the room. After 14 days of curing, the concrete panels are lifted with the aid of a 20-ton mobile crane and placed into final position.” PMSA, Quintin Booysen, Tel: (011) 578-8756, Email: Web: or

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specified a synthetic stone product because the use of genuine stone was deemed too expensive and costly to maintain. The alternative precast concrete product had to have the appearance of natural stone, the strength and economy required by modern building technology and was to be maintenance-free. Decorative Stone Masonry’s (DSM) building and corner blocks in zambezi brown met these conditions and were therefore specified for the project.

Synthetic stone One of the houses at Waterfall Mature Lifestyle Estate which was built with precast concrete blocks manufactured to resemble natural stone.

The CMA’s (Concrete Manufacturers Association) new category format for the 2012 Awards Excellence Competition has got off to a flying start. As anticipated, ‘Aesthetics’ captured the lion’s share of the new entry format with 29 submissions, followed by

‘Innovation’ and ‘Technical Excellence’ (15 each), ‘Sustainability’ (8) and five each for ‘Community Involvement’ and ‘Vintage’. One of the Aesthetics’ entries was from Waterfall Mature Lifestyle Estate. The developer of this upmarket estate

Culinary destination The 312-year-old Vergelegen Estate in Somerset West, owned by Anglo American, is renowned for its heritage, culture, wine and environmental projects. Working with a handpicked team of architects, heritage consultants, interior decorators and horticulturists, it has recently invested in its hospitality offerings with a new wine tasting centre and a bistro-style restaurant. The second phase, currently in progress, is developing the former Vergelegen Restaurant into a premier, formal culinary destination. A magnificent garden, the 18th on the estate, will also be designed to complement the new hospitality offerings. Vergelegen Wine Estate, Tel: (021) 847-1334, Web:


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The blocks were manufactured with a dry-cast process using a fine white silica aggregate, a light blend of cement and a pre-sealer. The latter prevented water absorption, efflorescence and mould build-up on the face of the blocks. It also ensured that the blocks were colour-fast, environmentally-friendly and maintenance-free. After infrared curing, the blocks were split and 15mm of material was chiselled off the face of each block. This ensured that each block had a unique appearance. Concrete Manufacturers Association, Taco Voogt, Tel: (011) 805-6742, Web:

In addition, GypWall DuraLine weighs just 14.75kg per square metre and can be installed at a speed of 40 to 50 square metres per day. The product indicates a loading capacity of up to 120kgs of planned loadings and up to 30kgs of unplanned loadings, and a single layer walling system can go up to a height of 3.6 metres. Saint-Gobain Gyproc, Tel: 086 027 2829, Email:, Website:

Cool Makeover Cooling a building’s roof is the quickest, most cost-effective and guaranteed method of reducing ambient heat in all types of buildings.The principal benefit of a cool roof is that internal temperature can be reduced by as much as 45%. Ceratech is a white roof coating containing millions of hollow ceramic beads that reduces heat by repelling it back into the atmosphere. This coating, which helps to keep the structure cooler, can be applied to most roof surfaces. Ceratech guarantees lower energy consumption and cost, lower roof maintenance and a longer roof life. Through its Cool Roofs Challenge, Ceratech aims to show how a simple shift in mind-set can have a hugely positive impact on the environment. Ceratech CEO, Chris Hayman says, “Cool roofs are catching on around the world but we’re still very behind here in South Africa … so we are setting a challenge. We think that choosing aesthetics over credible, proven green options is not so cool?” Ceratech, Chris Hayman, Tel: 0860 000 703, Web:

Raising Up Sika’s products were specified by Endecon Engineering consultants, for repairs to the four-year-old NG Kerk in Jeffrey’s Bay. Although only laid two years previously, the floor slabs in the church had sagged by 50mm in the centre and were displaying extensive cracks. Further cracking was evident in the walls. Rehabilitation of the floor slab was also required which included cutting back of the concrete and grinding the substrate of the interior ceiling. The contractor, Chartel was confident that Sika’s CarboDur Plates were the ideal solution for this project, and authorised staff training on application of the product before commencing the job. Sika CarboDur Plates are pultruded carbon fibre reinforced polymer (CFRP) laminates that are specifically designed for strengthening concrete, timber or masonry structures, and are bonded

onto the structure as external reinforcement using Sikadur-30 structural adhesive. Sika CarboDur plates are primarily used to increase the flexural strength or the load bearing capacity of floor slabs and beams. They are noncorrosive, lightweight and very easy to install, and they provide very high strength, excellent durability and outstanding fatigue resistance. Easily transported in rolls, these multi-purpose laminate plates are available in unlimited lengths and a wide variety of sizes. They have a low overall thickness, which means they can easily be plastered over or coated, to disguise their existence. Sika South Africa, Paul Adams, Tel: (031) 792-6500, Email:, Web:

Index to advertisers AAAMSA 2 Assa Abloy 8 ATI 33 Bohle 9 Diamond Products 46 Dulux 29 Duro Inside Front Cover Epsasa Inside Back Cover Firespec 18 Glass Planet Outside Back Cover HBS Outside Front Cover Kwikot 4, 16, 38 LiSec 12 PFG 10 RDA Aluminium 50 RVI 40 SAEE 32 Safiera 54 Saint Gobain 20 SA Sliding Door 19 Stalcor 30 Tile Africa 36 Trellidor 26

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Quick installation

When put through a number of tests to prove overall durability and performance levels, GypWall DuraLine offered superior performance. When a duty rating for structural strength was tested to BS (British standard) 5234: part 2, the product earned a Severe duty rating. Both systems achieved a 60 minute integrity and insulation fire rating according to SANS 10177 part 2, and in the acoustic tests carried out in accordance with BS EN ISO 140-3:1995, the products achieved a 45 Decibel rating with insulation and 41 Decibel rating with no insulation.


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THE ENERGY EFFICIENT INSULATION LEGISLATION SOLUTION EPS is a lightweight cellular material derived from petroleum and natural gas by-products. EPS sheets and boards are utilized for thermal and sound insulation in walls, roofs, and on floors. Loose beads are used in lightweight concrete, plasters and renderings. Other uses include under-floor heating systems, drainage boards, permanent formwork, foundation and prefabricated wall systems. Environment-friendly. Contains no CFCs and does not damage the ozone layer.

ARM Advertising Advertising & & Design Design 28974-1 28974-2 ARM

Easily Disposable. Correctly incinerated, 100kg of EPS reduces to 0,01kg of ash, and the emissions are non-toxic. Recyclable. Products include skirtings, poles, decking and picture frames. Energy-saving: helps conserves other energy usage. Compatible with advanced and conventional building materials. Lightweight and easy to work with. Rot-proof and durable. TM

Fire-retardant. styFRene Moisture-resistant.

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Processors and Manufacturers of Toughened Safety Glass


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Tel: Fax: Email: Address:

(011) 316 3331 (011) 316 1128 Spanner Road 16, Clayville Olifantsfontein


Samantha Danvers

Architect & Specificator SepOct 2012  

Promech publishes Architect & Specificator under the auspices of AAAMSA (Association of Architectural Aluminium Manufacturers of South Afric...

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