Athlone Towers demolition date set

Posted by: Saving Water SA (Cape Town, South Africa) – partnered with Water Rhapsody conservation systems – 20 July 2010

After extensive consultation and planning, the Athlone cooling towers are to be demolished on Sunday 22 August 2010 at 12:00.

Both towers, which are nearly 20 years old, form part of the decommissioned Athlone coal-fired power station and have become unsafe following the collapse of the strengthening rings around one of them in February. They now need to be demolished in the interests of public safety.

The City’s Disaster Risk Management team is monitoring wind speeds, which could cause the towers to collapse, on a daily basis and has a plan in place should they become excessive.

It was decided last week that the towers will come down on Sunday 22 August, as this is a realistic date by which all safety measures can be in place and by when Jet Demolition indicated they will have all their preparation work for the demolition completed. The demolition is not weather dependent and can go ahead even if it rains on the day.

Various City Departments have worked together closely to ensure the demolition will be safe for the public, the surrounding areas and City services.

All the required permits and approvals have been obtained and the necessary site preparation is underway, with particular attention being given to the protection of existing services and safety of both the public and workers involved. Continue reading

City awards tender for Athlone tower demolition

Posted by: Saving Water SA (Cape Town, South Africa) – partnered with Water Rhapsody conservation systems – 25 May 2010

Alderman Clive Justus, the City of Cape Town’s Mayoral Committee Member for Utility Services, today announced that a contractor had been appointed to demolish the two cooling towers at the former Athlone Power Station.

Three months ago, on 14 February, reinforced concrete stiffening rings on one of the towers collapsed. These stabilising rings were added more than two decades ago and their collapse raised safety concerns.

Two consulting engineering companies confirmed that the towers may collapse, particularly in strong, north-westerly winds and a decision was thus taken to proceed with the demolition of the towers.

In terms of the bid specification and an agreed working programme, the winning contractor will be responsible for safe access to the towers and their implosion. Thereafter, they must clean up, level and prepare the site for subsequent operations.

In response to the request for quotations, eight offers were received, ranging from R4,79 million to R23,46 million. Following an evaluation and a check for compliance with the tender requirements, the lowest offer which complied with the specification, R6,496 million, was submitted by Jet Demolition (Pty) Ltd. The need to expedite the demolition was obvious and the City Manager’s office, accordingly awarded the contract. The company’s track record indicates that it will be able to successfully complete the contract.

Jet Demolition will now meet City officials and the appointed consulting engineers to discuss the programme for the works in greater detail.

“We are well aware of the great public interest in the demolition of the towers and will share further information with the public as the process unfolds”, Alderman Justus said.

Source: City of Cape Town

Related Articles: Demolition of Athlone towers to proceed
Landmark towers to be demolished

Demolition of Athlone towers to proceed

Posted by: Saving Water SA (Cape Town, South Africa) – partnered with Water Rhapsody conservation systems – 11 April 2010

Three thousand holes need to be drilled into each tower for controlled demolition

Progress towards the demolition of the two Athlone cooling towers is proceeding smoothly, as the City works towards a demolition date around Sunday 30 May 2010.

A professional team, which includes an environmental scientist, was appointed on 10 March by means of a competitive process to oversee the technical, environmental and heritage aspects of the project and to prepare for a safe demolition.

The decision to demolish the two iconic towers follows structural damage to one of the cooling towers during the early hours of Sunday, 14 February 2010, when the stabilising rings around one of the towers became detached and fell to the ground. These rings were fitted as an additional safety and stability measure almost twenty years ago. Consulting structural engineers were immediately appointed to assess the damage and advise the City on what steps should be taken. Their recommendation was that the towers be demolished as soon as possible.

The City accepted the recommendation and has immediately proceeded to plan the demolition process. Continue reading

Landmark towers to be demolished

Posted by: Saving Water SA (Cape Town, South Africa) – partnered with Water Rhapsody conservation systems – 16 February 2010

Parts of reinforcement rings, fitted to the Athlone Towers in 1992 as a safety measure, fell to the ground in the early hours of Valentines Day forcing a short precautionary closure of the N2.

Athlone power Station, Cape Town. Photo by DanieVDM under creative commons licence 2.0

According to the structural engineers’ initial assessment the loss of the rings does not necessarily compromise the integrity of the cooling towers, but the City of Cape Town is monitoring the situation.

Today the towers serve no useful purpose and will be demolished as soon as a report of the City’s structural engineers has been studied. Electricity generation on the site was stopped in 2002 and there was no plan for any future generation on site. A decision to decommission the site was taken in 2006.

A range of preliminary scenarios for the redevelopment of the entire Athlone power station site were submitted to Council’s Utilities Portfolio Committee in October 2009. These options will be opened for public comment before the City decides on the final redevelopment of the site. Various options have been offered including educational, commercial and residential facilities on site.

By demolishing the towers, an additional eight hectares of land would be made available for the redevelopment.

Source: City of Cape Town