Leading infrastructure specialist mobilises in Western Cape

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Leading infrastructure specialist mobilises in Western Cape

M&D Construction Group, a leading diversified South African contractor, will assist Breede Valley Local Municipality augment water-supply capacity in the Langerug reservoir reticulation zone.

Financed by the Municipal Infrastructure Grant, the new 20 ML reservoir will support significant growth in the Cape Winelands region, including a planned large mixed-use housing development, located just outside Worcester, Western Cape.

This is the first contract to be secured by M&D Construction Group’s new Paarl office, which officially opened in March 2017.

Manager of the operation, Sarel du Toit, says that the opening of the office has enhanced existing interaction channels between M&D Construction Group and public- and private-sector client bodies in this territory, while significantly bolstering the group’s already strong footprint in South Africa.

“Opening a permanent operation in Paarl is a proactive step taken by the group’s management, considering the significant pressure that is being placed on ageing provincial and local infrastructure by new housing and other property developments in the region. Our diversity provides the flexibility that is required to supply existing and anticipated future demand for high quality infrastructure. These span civil-engineering, pipe-laying and earthworks through to road construction and general building,” he says.

The Paarl office was also awarded this contract based on the group’s proven track record in assisting state successfully complete complex water infrastructure projects. A sound example includes the acclaimed 50 ML Mafenya Reservoir in the North West Province that was highly commended by judges at the 2017 Fulton Awards for excellence in the design and application of concrete.

Du Toit says that the construction of the 20 Ml reservoir for Breede Valley Local Municipality will also provide M&D Construction Group ample opportunity to demonstrate its competencies in the field.

“One of the complexities of this project will be completing the construction of the post-tensioned dome-roof structure in only 56 weeks to ensure the timely completion of the contract. Located on a relatively steep incline on the one outlet side of the structure, the task at hand relies heavily on a well-equipped and seasoned contracting team,” he says.

On this project, M&D Construction Group is again working alongside Aurecon. The company previously worked with the leading consulting engineering firm on the prestigious Sol Plaatje University Library and Student Resource Building, a structural engineering feat in the central-business district of Kimberley that received a Fulton Award in 2017.

The new reservoir is being built next to the existing Langerug reservoir, and the site is being accessed via a new 4 m-wide gravel road that was built by M&D Construction Group to mitigate the impact of construction operations on the built-up surrounding areas.

Heavy construction vehicles will access the gravel road via Rawsonville Road past the Worcester Flying Club to commence bulk earthworks, which include large excavations that will be followed by mass concrete in-fills to establish the platform of the structure.

M&D Construction Group will also undertake the associated connections, including to the existing Stettynskloof Dam pipeline and Langerug reservoir intake tower.

A new 45 m-long 600 mm-diameter pipeline will tie into the existing 680 mm-diameter dam pipeline, while M&D Construction Group will also supply, lay, bed, pressure test and steralise a 22 m-long 400 mm-diameter pipeline that will connect to the intake tower.

In addition, the contractor will construct the reinforced-concrete valve chambers, as well as thrust and anchor blocks, as well as supply, lay and bed the valves, fittings and specials.

M&D Construction will also upgrade the capacities of the existing Langerug booster pump station to deliver 30 l/second at a differential head of 40 m. This will entail overhauling mechanical and electrical equipment, including pumps, valves, motors and motor-control centres, as well as the telemetry system. The facility will be commissioned by M&D Construction Group and includes a 28 day trial operation period.

Moreover, the contractor will refurbish the existing ablution building on the reservoir complex and remove existing fencing around the older reservoir to establish a new boundary around the two structures.

Due to be completed by mid-2019, Du Toit anticipates that 150 people will be employed on the project when construction peaks. These will include representatives of sub-contractors, as well as unskilled members from surrounding communities who will also have the opportunity to receive important on-the-job training from M&D Construction Group.

As outlined in South African president, Cyril Ramaphosa’s inaugural State of The Nation Address, water infrastructure ranks highly on policymakers’ agenda in drought-stricken Western Cape, and this will also be a significant focus for the new satellite office in the short term.

“While the prolonged drought has had a devastating impact, it has also served as a reminder of the importance of water and associated infrastructure in the country. No longer viewed as merely a right by responsible South Africans, the dire situation has driven the implementation of demand-side management programmes in the province. Provincial government, municipalities and citizens must be lauded for the stellar role that they have played in driving back ‘Day Zero’ in many cities. Combined with a steady investment into ‘hard’ water infrastructure, they will go a long way in averting a future crisis and restoring many cities in the province to their former world-class status,” Du Toit concludes.




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