Nov 19, 2010
Indepth look into the 2010 Steel AwardsBack
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The Cape Town stadium was the overall winner of the 2010 Steel Awards, which, perhaps, attracted the best- ever entries since the award's inception, says Southern African Institute of Steel Construction (SAISC) executive director Dr Hennie de Clercq.
The awards were hosted by the SAISC and held concurrently in Johannesburg, Durban and Cape Town this year, with construction group Aveng as the main sponsor.
The judges said that the Cape Town stadium was a magnificent structure with some of the best steelwork they had ever seen. "The execution of the steelwork, some of it fabricated locally and some of it imported, is testimony to the genius of the project team, which comprised engineers, fabricators and contractors from around the world in a collaboration which they and the whole country can be proud of," the judges noted.
They added that this project has been an eye-opener to the excellence that can be achieved in the industry, with lasting benefits for local industry.
"The transfer of knowledge and skills will play a significant role in future projects. In particular, the use of lighter steel structures, slender members and cable structures will increasingly manifest itself in the steel construction industry," said the judges.
They believe that steel was the only feasible material for the construction of the roof elements, as the tolerances that had to be achieved within the steelwork to support the rooftop glass panes would have been impossible with any other material.
To achieve the ambitious free-span requirements of 58 m, which include a cantilever section of 14 m, a lightweight suspended steel structure was adopted. Covering an astounding 37 000 m² and weighing 4 500 t, the stadium boasts the largest glass-covered roof in Southern Africa.
Steelwork contractor DSE noted that the stadium was a complex structural project and was one of the most intricate steelwork structures ever produced in its workshop.
The judges said that a project of this magnitude has extreme architectural and engineering demands, all of which were met in the most professional manner.
The developer/owner is the City of Cape Town. The architects were Stadium Architects Joint Venture (JV), GMP International Architects & Designers (lead concept architects), Louis Karol Architects (lead managing architects) and POINT Architects & Urban Designers (lead integration architects).
The structural engineers were Green Point Stadium 2010 Structural Engineers JV, Roof and Facade, BKS, Schlaich Bergermann und Partner (Stuttgart), Stadium & Podium, ILiSO Consulting, Goba, Henry Fagan and Partners, KFD Wilkinson and Arcus Gibb.
The quantity surveyors were Cape Town Stadium QS Association, Davis Langdon, MLC, Abakali Quantity Surveyors and H&P Quantity Surveyors.
The project managers were Green Point Stadium 2010 Project Managers, MDA Projects, BKS Ariya Projects and NOA. The main contractor for the project was Murray & Roberts I WBHO JV. The selected roof subcontractor is Pfeifer Seil· und Hebetechnik for the Birdair/Pfeifer JV.
The subcontractor to the selected roof subcontractor Roof Truss Steelwork Contractor was DSE Structural Engineers & Contractors for Pfeifer Seil· und Hebetechnik. The compression ring steelwork contractor was ABJ Engineering & Contracting Company and the purlins steelwork contractor was Mazor Steel.
Other steelwork contractors were Balastrade Beams, Union Steel, Facade Steel, and Mostostall Hightex JV.
The Cape Town International Airport (CTIA) was named the joint winner of the infrastructure category with the Durban's new King Shaka International Airport (KSIA).
The CTIA project involved the construction of new terminal buildings and the domestic departures lounge and their integration with the revamped existing facilities.
The judges said that CTIA was an outstanding example of the ingenious use of steel. "This is one of the best entries received, where not only were all the stringent requirements of the brief admirably met - including that it be ready for the 2010 FIFA World Cup - but a facility has been created, which is economically sustainable well beyond 2010. Also, and of fundamental importance to this competition, this could not have been possible without the extensive and brilliant use of structural steel."
This project's challenges included constructing the new buildings within the confines of a fully operational airport; limited access to the site resulting in out-of-sequence design and construction; a complex geometry; an expanded brief from the client during the construction phase, erecting steelwork at heights in excess of 30 m in the strong Cape winds and creating buildings, where functionality and aesthetics were equal in importance and could be compromised.
Distinctly different structural solutions were adopted for the various buildings with structural steel, which enabled the design team to satisfy all the challenging requirements of the project - easily emerging as the overriding construction material.
The judges said that the amazing steel work is there to be appreciated by layman and professional alike and leaves one in no doubt that both the aesthetic and functional requirements were fulfilled brilliantly.
"This project is a beacon of what the South African steel construction industry and construction industry in general can achieve, and will be enjoyed by millions of local and international travelers in future," they said.
The developer/owner was Airports Company of South Africa (Acsa), the architect was Blueprint Worx, the structural engineer was KFD Wilkinson Consulting Engineers. the subconsulting engineer was AKI (now part of Aurecon Group), the quantity surveyor was DT2 Quantity Surveyors, the project manager was TP2 Project Managers, the main contractor was Grinaker-LTA Stefanutti Stocks (GLS) JV and the steelwork contractors was Mazor Steel and Scott Steel Projects.
The other infrastructure category winner was the KSIA. On a 2 000 ha site, with a runway length of 3,700 m, sufficient for the latest wide-bodied aircraft, with runway and taxi areas of 400000 m², the KSIA can handle up to 7,5-million passengers a year, with an extension provision for 45-million passengersa year.
The judges said: "The KSIA is a world class entrance to a vital region of South Africa and to the country as a whole. The ingenious use of structural steelwork in a project of such grandeur and importance to the economic growth of this country is a tribute to the South Africa's engineering expertise", they said.
Structural steelwork was extensively used in all KSIA buildings with over 5 000 t used. The structures comprise, the 100 000-m² terminal building; a 15 500-m² cargo handling structure which will handle more than 150 000 t of cargo a year; a 60 m-high control tower; a multistorey parking garage and airport ancillary buildings.
The judges agreed that the tight delivery schedule and the relatively limited access period for erection were important factors in the judging process. The complete project, with a total value of around R8-billion, was completed in 32 month, which they said was an outstanding achievement, which set a new benchmark for the South African construction industry.
The focal point of the site is the 100000-m² terminal building, which comprises a basement, arrivals level, departures level and the facility's plant block and associated air corridor complex; the basic floor structures are constructed using reinforced concrete coffer and flat slabs.
In terms of the roof support, the architect's brief was to make a strong feature of its primary structural elements. This was achieved by creating a system of raking structural steel tubular structures springing from structural grid points, supporting deep tubular triangular girders.
"Some 5 000 t of structural steelwork was used in this project in a record time of 32 months. It is clear that the architects and engineers worked closely together to create an aesthetic and efficient structure. As one's eyes are drawn upwards, one is struck by the sheer magnificence of the roof above.
"With the whole world watching to see if the infrastructure improvements would be ready as promised, and they did it! This was a work worthy of the highest praise," the judges said.
The judges noted that the CTIA and the KSIA were joint winners of the infrastructure category as both projects overcame unique and similar challenges including having to be completed within the stringent 2010 FIFA World Cup time frame and special logistical challenges. With Cape Town, the project was completed with minimal disturbance to the existing airport operation, while with Durban, the logistics of relocating an airport added significantly to the judging criteria.
The developer/owner is Acsa, the architect was Ilembe Architectural JV, the structural engineer was the Ilembe Engineering JV, the quantity surveyor was the Ilembe Cost Management JV, the project manager was Ilembe EPC JV, the main contractor wad the Ilembe EPC JV, the steelwork contractor was Redfab Impact Elma JV and the detailer was Structech.
Light Steel Frame Building Category
The Zambezi Retail Mall Extension won the light steel frame building (LSFB) category sponsored by NJR Steel.
The judges said: "When LSFB is expertly and appropriately used, it becomes clear that it was the only solution for that particular job. This was certainly the case at the Zambezi Mall extensions."
At first planned to cover only a restaurant area, the southern portion of the roof - covering 2300 m² had to now accommodate an indoor cricket facility and the underside of the roof, at the lower end, was found to be 750 mm too low.
By this time, however, half of the roof trusses had already been erected. Originally intended to be supported on a concrete upstand beam, the support at this lower end of the roof was thus raised by 750 mm using lightweight stub columns and steel beams. Without even removing the lightweight roof trusses, the new raised supports were installed, and the roof was re-placed. "Accomplishing this major, last-minute change demonstrated the extraordinary flexibility of the roof truss and the beam/column steel," the project team said.
The judges pointed out that it was pleasing that a very large project had won the award. "During the past two years light steel frame building has come to the fore and was showcased in Steel Awards 2008 and 2009. In both instances, however, the prizes went to houses. The construction industry is definitely discovering that this form of construction can be used for a multitude of applications."
The architecture category was won by the Freedom Park Museum, which was a ‘dream come true' for the project team. Situated on the Salvokop Hill, in Pretoria, located strategically between the University of South Africa and the Voortrekker Monument, the Freedom Park Museum forms part of the second phase of the heritage development named //hapo - pronounced "Hlapo" - a name derived from the San phrase meaning "a dream is only a dream if it is dreamt by the community".
Initiated by former president Thabo Mbeki, Freedom Park, which raison d'etre is to promote unity, peace and reconciliation, serves as a centre of remembrance of all those who have died in military conflict in South Africa.
The Freedom Park Museum building itself is a work of art, awash with important and relevant symbolism. The group of asymmetrical buildings on different levels, creating the image of a multistorey unit when viewed from the outside - symbolise a cluster of boulders that typically form part of the African landscape and, recognising the significance of copper in African cultures, the metal was used on the sides of the building and for the roof cladding further enhancing the boulder-like appearance of the building. Also, the building is surrounded by numerous pathways and landscape structures, all with specific symbolic meanings.
Structural steel was chosen as the primary construction material and innovative steelwork solutions were developed including a universal connection system, which allowed maximum flexibility to sculpt the complex façade shapes and the innovative conversion to three dimensional drawings of extensive, detailed two dimensional structural steel drawings.
The judges, who were deeply impressed by this project, said:"While the architectural ‘boulder' concept may be easy to imagine, it is inordinately difficult to create in reality. Freedom Park Museum represents aesthetics of the highest order and excellent professional and contracting work in the creation of a complex structure, which had to be completed very quickly."
"The outcome is a magnificent structure with high calibre steelwork that forms a prime heritage landmark for all South Africans and an important tourist attraction. Only through the extensive use of structural steel as a primary building material was this made possible," the judges added.
A commendation in the architecture category was won by the Nike football training centre, in Klipspruit, Soweto.
The centre, yet another structure in Soweto to display outstanding architectural features, prompted the judges to say: "This is a lesson in how to achieve the impossible time-wise. It accomplished using the ‘A' team of consulting engineers, the ‘A' team main contractor and the ‘A' team of steelwork and other subcontractors."
From a time perspective, ‘achieving the impossible' is no exaggeration. With a start date of December 14, 2009, the project had to be completed by May 15, 2010, in time for the 2010 FIFA World Cup.
The judges, who noted that steel played a major role in achieving the deadlines, said:"The speed of erection of the structural frame and floors allowed adequate time for the main contractor to build the walls, clad the building in stone, install all services and finishes, and complete the project in time."
The development included two all-weather football pitches, two grass pitches, refurbishing the existing changing facilities and ablutions as well a new administration/events building.
The judges commented that the attractive rusty-brown ‘ribbed' shell of the building, which cleverly spells out ‘SOWETO', ingeniously draws one into the high-tech, funky interior, which is adorned with beautiful art works - made from various materials including Indian steel wire, brushed aluminium plates and perforated punched plates - and posters with motivational slogans of famous football stars, that are integral to the aesthetic integrity of the building.
They said that this was more than a successful, aesthetic, fast track construction project, but a social statement of the highest order. "It gives young footballers access to high-end training facilities, football education and top-level coaching and yet it's not just about football; it's about education on and off the pitch. Essential life skills, including HIV awareness, are taught helping these young sportspeople to reach their full potential," they said.
The developer/owner is Nike South Africa, the architect was Luyanda Mpahlwa DesignSpace Africa, the structural engineer was AKI (now part of Aurecon Group), the project manager was SIP Project Managers, the main contractor was Rainbow Construction, the steelwork contractor was Tass Engineering and the steelwork subcontractor was Cadcon.
Bridges played an important role in this year's awards with the 7th Avenue Bridge over the N1 motorway winning the bridge category.
Designed as a cable stayed bridge, the unique feature of this design is that it does not have a counterweight rear span. Typical cable stayed bridges, for example, the Nelson Mandela bridge- the 2003 Steel Awards overall winner, have a long steel clear span with a short counterweight span in concrete.
In the case of the 7th Avenue Bridge, the traditional short span concrete counterweight span is replaced with an outwards leaning concrete tower column, which transfers the forces in the cable stays both axially and by bending moment into the footing. According to the submission, the absence of a counterweight span gave the team an opportunity to do something ‘very elegant'.
Structurally, the walkway and cable stay ends are tied to a toblerone circular hollow section truss creating a clear arched span over the freeway and while the absence of a counterweight span did give the team an opportunity to do something very elegant, a load path for all the forces at the top ends of the cable still had to be created.
The judges noted that dealing with the ends of the cables is one of the intricate issues in designing, detailing and building a bridge of this nature. Each slope is different and each angle of intersection between the cable and the concrete tower is different. "This requires immaculate attention to detail, which is an omnipresent feature of this job," they said.
They added that the 7th Street Bridge was a great example of ‘the right material in the right place' and this, combined with the quality of the steelwork and the excellent presentation overall, made it a high-quality and elegant solution.
"This is a wonderful addition to Johannesburg's North Western gateway and the lighting at night makes it truly exceptional. It is clearly an example of excellent use of steelwork truly deserving this award in the bridge category," they said.
The developer/owner is South African Road Agency Limited (Sanral), the architect was Professor Glen Mills/Sanral, the structural engineer was SSI Engineers & Environmental Consultants, the main contractor was WBHO, the steelwork contractor was Omni Struct Nkosi, the detailer was Omni Struct Nkosi.
Another bridge project to be recognised was the KwaZulu-Natal (KZN) Department of Transport's pedestrian bridge project, which won a commendation in the community development category. The project consisted of six bridges over the Bisi, Hlembitwe, Mtwalume, Nondweni and Umzimkhulu (2) rivers.
The judges concurred that this project showed, the benefits structural steel brought to rural communities ‘faced with natural barriers that adversely affect everyday life'. Before the bridges, school children often had to wade or even swim across the rivers to get to school and back at great risk to their lives.
From a technical perspective, the judges agreed that the bridge structures demonstrated the most efficient use of structural steel in terms of strength to weight, resulting in significant transport savings and obviating the use of heavy lifting equipment in these remote locations.
The design uses suspension cables sized to carry all dead and imposed loads. Further, a light steel bracing truss, capable of carrying a portion of the imposed and dynamic loading back to the supports, was introduced. The suspension cable doubled as a compression member of the bracing truss when carrying imposed loading.
This fundamental design philosophy was to create a very stable structure with very little perceptible movement even under unfavourable loading conditions.
With respect to construction, components were designed for modular off-site fabrication. No cranes were necessary during erection as the heaviest component weighed no more than 200 kg (excluding the cables). Hot dip galvanizing was specified for all structures to improve long-term life of the bridges.
The judges noted that the basic structure of the bridges was so much more than ‘just another foot bridge'. "What has been achieved here is a cost effective, stable bridge concept that is a veritable win-win for both the developer - the KZN Department of Transport - and the various communities so positively affected by it," they concluded.
Community Development Category
The school was built using a combination of Arval façade system panels and extensive use of steel including: the IPE portal frames bolted to raft foundations; lightweight steel in dividing walls and cladding framework; steel roof sheeting fixed to steel top hat sections; insulated steel façade system as external walling and powder coated steel windows and doors with ancillary flashings.
According to the project team's submission, the main aim was to use alternative steel technologies within the cost-parameters of a conventional brick and mortar school and to then develop a prototype cost-efficient school building method that could later be produced in kit form and easily erected in other provinces.
"The buildings are not only aesthetically pleasing, but also incorporate unique design solutions, which are evident in various details such as the window sills, which combine a steel channel with a timber top for electrical trunking and data cables. Also, the triangular winged layout gives most of the classrooms a north-orientation with plenty of light and, with windows that can be opened just below the sloping ceiling line, the classrooms' natural ventilation regulates the temperature even on a hot summer's day."
"This is a remarkable achievement considering it was a pilot project and neither the professional team nor the contractor had ever worked with some of the technologies before," said the judges
"The Meetse-a-Bophelo Primary School buildings are an excellent example of what can be achieved with steel in the built environment. The project remained within budget and the promised construction time frame and, importantly, the design team managed to combine simple, well-known construction methods in new applications making it possible for the local labour force to be employed on the project. All in all it was a clear winner of the community development category award," they said.
Mining and Industrial Category
The SACD Freight's Cape Town depot won the mining and industrial category.
According the judges, the 20 000-m² facility, clearly visible from the N1 highway as one exits or enters the city bowl, has, in spite of it being a functional, ‘hard-core' industrial warehouse, ‘all the hallmarks of a highly creative architect's touch and the professional finishes of a proud and professional construction team.'
Perhaps the most outstanding feature of SACD depot structure is the asymmetrical curved roof, which is not only of high aesthetic value, but also efficiently achieves the profile of minimum height requirements dictated by the cross-flow nature of the SACD warehousing function, which ranges from off-loading interlink vehicles, to incoming goods staging, to high-bay racking, to pick-and-pack areas, and out to container loading.
Roof areas are 19 000-m² internally, 4 600 m² for the loading bay, 1 400 m² for the container and 700 m² for the gable overhangs.
The judges noted that the architect's desire for a specially shaped roof was achieved through excellent engineering. "It turned out to be a cost effective fit-for-purpose design where plant and structural requirements are expertly married to create an aesthetic, architectural feature."
The structure rises from the 5-m loading bay height to its 19,5-m apex, giving 14, 5 m for racking. It then descends to 10, 5 m providing cover for the container loading area at a suitable height for the reach trucks operating in this area.
The judges said that the standard of finish and presentation in the entire project was exceptional, especially given that this was a fast track project, which was completed in only eight months. They confirmed that the use of a steel roof, combined with precast concrete walling enabled such quick delivery.
"This is not just another industrial warehouse. It is an excellently planned and executed project in which several initiatives and elements of ‘good practice' were incorporated to create a practical, aesthetic and sustainable structure. It is a worthy winner of the mining and industrial category," they said.
The developer/owner is SACD Freight, the architect was Glen Loudon Architects in Association with Perry Anderson Architects, structural engineer was Sutherland, the quantity surveyor and development Manager wasJMHT Quantity Surveyors, the main contractor was NMC and the steelwork contracto was Mazor Group.
A commendation in the mining and industrial category was won by the Zibulo Overland Conveyor (ZOC) with the judges defining it as ‘a great mining project'.
The judges said that while almost all mines and collieries involve conveyors that are subject to stringent quality and environmental requirements there were several factors that made the ZOC stand out from a steelwork perspective.
Two of these factors are firstly, it is the longest single-flight overland conveyor in Africa, the second longest in the Southern Hemisphere and one of the longest in the world. Featuring three horizontal curves and several convex and concave vertical curves, its extraordinary length of 15, 9km necessitated comprehensive static and dynamic analysis of the entire system of which it is a part, and which includes conveyors, processing plants, product stockpiles and silos.
Secondly, the ZOC traverses sensitive environmental areas including vast wetland areas, which required nifty steelwork in places including specially designed gantries spanning the wetlands to prevent spillage and the consequent contamination of surface run-off water.
At Zibulo Colliery, coal is brought from a depth of around 176 m with an incline conveyor to the surface, where it is discharged into buffer silos and fed into a crushing and screening circuit by means of a second conveyor. Then, by means of an acceleration conveyor, this material is accelerated to a speed matching that of the undulating and curved ZOC and transferred onto it. The ZOC now transports 1 650 t/h of coal to the Phola processing plant - an Anglo American Inyosi Coal/BHP Billiton JV operation.
The judges noted that the complexity of the Phola coal beneficiation plant and its conveyor system, into which the ZOC must merge, renders its design and construction that much more impressive.
They added that this project was professionally executed from beginning to end. "From the hole in the ground at its source, all the way curving up hill and dale to the load out area just short of 16 km away it is a massive steel construction of sheer genius," the judges said.
The developer/owner is Anglo American Inyosi Coal, the mechanical engineer, structural engineer, the main contractor and the engineering contractor was Roymec, and the subcontract fabricator was IVMA Engineering.
Tubular Structures Category
Finally, and yet another stadium winner, the Mbombela (Nelspruit) Stadium, won the tubular structures category, sponsored by the Association of Steel Tube and Pipe Manufacturers of Southern Africa.
From a technical perspective, the project can be described as ‘boxed cantilever girders springing off concrete buttresses, cable stayed to shorten the cantilever spans'.
The project team's submission points out that because some of these box girders come off the corners at 45 degrees to the long sides and the short ends, the result is very complex and intricate connections consisting of 11 pipes intersecting in a node.
Like the Royal Bafokeng stadium, winner of the technical excellence category in 2009, the Mbombela Stadium was one of the few stadiums that was virtually entirely Made in South Africa.
In line with the dominant environmental theme of South Africa's ‘far east', the architects incorporated a wild-life theme into the structures, and the now world-wide recognised herd of red, dust-covered giraffes and the Zebra stripe seats enhance the Mbombela stadium's status as the new and lasting ‘grand entrance' to the lowveld and its game reserve treasures.
The judges noted that tubes are the standout feature of this project and prompted them to say that it was one of those endeavours that gave South Africa the opportunity to show what it can do when it comes to the construction of enormous and complex projects.
"The end result is an aesthetically pleasing, well executed and efficient structure, which is an inspiration to both the local population and the country as a whole to always keep striving for greater heights," the judges concluded.
Sponsors for the Steel Awards
The full list of sponsors were the Aveng group- DSE Structural Engineers & Contractors, Trident Steel & Grinaker-LTA M&E; Steeldale (main sponsor), ArcellorMittal South Africa(T Square - table decoration sponsor), Association of Steel Tube and Pipe Manufacturers of South Africa (tubular category award sponsor), NJR Steel (LSFB award sponsor), B&T Steel Construction, Bolt and Engineering Distributors, Cosira Group, Group Five Projects, KMG Service Centres, Macsteel, Robor and Tubular Holdings (partner sponsors).
This press release was issued on behalf of the Southern African Institute of Steel Construction on behalf of Brooke Browde Communications.
Edited by: Brindaveni Naidoo
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