Massive Bus Garage is a Stretch For Long Booms
Pumping a cast-in-place 500,000 square foot bus garage solely with boom pumps poses a challenge when it is a sprawling structure hemmed in by freeways, railroad tracks and light rail lines. “It’s a stretch, “ states Charlie Bush, Noremac Concrete Pumping operations manager, describing the Northeast Transit Garage (NETG) located in Edmonton, Alberta. It’s a good thing that Noremac is headquartered in Edmonton since they have had one or two pumps on site three to five times a week for the past year.
The LEED-Silver certified building will have capacity for 300 buses on two levels and administrative and operational space for 700 drivers and office staff on four levels. Parking for employees will be underground. “There is a lot of suspended decks as well as below grade concrete pumping, “ explains Bush, who used almost every size boom in the company’s 30 pump Schwing fleet.
Noremac’s long booms have shouldered the majority of the work. Their KVM 55 with 170- feet of reach and 213 cubic yard per hour output was a regular visitor to the site. “A lot of the suspended slabs were sloped which slowed down the finishing crew, “ explains Bush, “ So the output of the pump was hardly ever challenged but we used every bit of its reach.” Often as many as 10 sections of pipe were added to reach remote pour areas.
The Overhead Roll and Fold boom of the S 47 SX was particularly useful reaching into covered areas. “The ability to stick the first, second and even the third section into confined areas eliminated some of the extra system,” according to Bush. He adds, “This machine also has the Super X outriggers that allows it to set up very close to the pour and maximize its reach.” The pump’s 152-feet of vertical reach and 140 feet of horizontal reach complement the twin cylinder all-hydraulic concrete pump’s output. Daily pour volumes varied from 130 to 650 cubic yards. With more than 52,000 cubic yards to be pumped, the project sometimes required more than one pump per day.
Occasionally awkward pours would come up after the suspended slabs were in place and subgrade work remained. “We would use our 31 EZ with five-section telescoping boom, “ states Bush, “It has the ability to telescope in and under decks. “And with an overhead unfolding height of 18’8” it could set-up almost anywhere.” Vertical reach of the machine is 99-feet with the ability to reach in 86-feet using the 15’3” of telescopic action.
A surprise performer on the job was Noremac’s new S 38 SX with five section Hyper Extension boom introduced this year. “We broke this pump in on this project and are still discovering all of its versatility, “ says Bush. The machine features a 22’10” outrigger spread for setting up on the tight job site. “The articulation of the boom allowed our operator to put the tip hose in some difficult areas we would not have been able to reach otherwise,” Bush notes. Total articulation of the boom is 915-degrees with a 730-degree slewing range. The new machine is bridge legal in Alberta when mounted on a conventional chassis with a pusher axle. It can also be ordered on cab-over chassis.
As the structure’s concrete placement continues, longer reach is required. So Noremac has invested in an even longer boom to pump slabs on grade for employee parking. The company is the first in Western Canada to receive a permitable 61-meter Schwing boom, thanks to the efforts of Schwing engineering and their repair and refurbishing facility, Concrete Pump Repair (CPR). “We always wanted an S 61 SX and through discussions with our Schwing rep Matt Donnelly and the efforts of Schwing, we finally got one,” Bush noted.
The new machine, delivered recently, combines engineered features from Schwing that were executed by CPR, that allows the S 61 SX to be legal with permits in Alberta. “The new machine carries an extra axle and utilizes super single tires for weight savings,” according to Donnelly. Super singles are low profile, 17-inch wide tires that have a load rating equal to or greater than a pair of conventional 22.5 tires. They trim 200 pounds off each axle, freeing up an extra 400 lb. of legal load carrying capacity. When comparing super singles on aluminum wheels to duals on steel wheels the overall weight savings can be as high as 1,300 pounds. “By the time the area is graded, winter frost will have set in but we will have 15 pours for the parking lot next Spring and the new 61 will be very handy,” Bush says. The entire project is expected to be completed in 2019.
Situated on 29 acres, the new NETG will occupy the former site of the Swift Company Packing plant that became the Canada Packers meat processing plant in 1936. A hundred-fifty foot tall smokestack from the plant still stands on the premises and received historical designation in 2015. The historic site was incorporated into the architectural design of the NETG and will be landscaped with a sidewalk to the smokestack. Lead design architects gh3 were honored by the Canadian Architect Association receiving the prestigious Award of Excellence for their work on the NETG.
Owner: City of Edmonton, Alberta
General Contractor: Graham Construction and Engineering, Calgary, Alberta
Architect: gh3, Toronto, Ontario
Pumping Contractor: Noremac Industries Ltd, Alberta
Pumping Equipment: Schwing S 31 EZ, S38SX, S 47 SX and KVM 55 truck mounted concrete pumps with placing booms.