Terraforce concrete retaining blocks, manufactured by Terraforce lincensee Klapmuts Concrete, featured in three award-winning projects among the Concrete Manufacturers Association Awards for Excellence 2010.
The Public Transport Shared Service Facility in Athlone, Cape Town is a National and Regional - Coastal award winning project in the category for concrete retaining block walls less than 3m high.
Terraforce 4x4 Multi-step blocks and Terraforce L18 blocks were used to construct the steps leading up to the raised forecourt of the building. They act also as a retaining element and provide informal seating.
The judges noted the innovative, multifunctional use of the products and they noted the neat workmanship and attention to detail which softens the landscaping.
At House Rautenberg in Gordon’s Bay, Western Cape, the Regional - Coastal award winning project in the category for concrete retaining block walls more than 3m high, Terraforce L11 blocks and 4x4 Multi-step blocks were used to create three level terraces on the steeply sloping site.
The upper terrace is planted with indigenous shrubs and plants, the middle terrace is lawned, and the lower terrace incorporates a swimming pool with an adjacent entertainment area.
Terraforce L11 smooth-face blocks were chosen for the retaining wall which covers an area of 300m², and the 4x4 Multi-step blocks were used to build the staircases.
To create the terraces, 750m³ of fill had to be brought in and carted down the slope by hand because it was too steep for a digger-loader to negotiate.
The judges recognised this as a well executed project that had converted an unusable slope into development-friendly terraces.
A series of concrete retaining block walls at Fijnbosch Farming in Banhoek near Stellenbosch won the Regional-Coastal Award in the Vintage sub-category (projects older than 10 years) for concrete block retaining walls.
When the house and a farm building were designed the architect decided that, for economic and practical reasons, they should be built on level ground. Consequently, two embankments were formed, one 6m high and one 9m high, and had to be retained.
Terraforce L13 blocks were used to build the two-sided triple-terraced retaining wall around the house and the three-sided double-terraced retaining wall around the farm building.
Terraces were created to soften the impact of the structures and to lower the horizon line so that the view of the mountains would not be obscured. The retaining blocks were planted with indigenous plants.
A three-sided retaining wall was also built around the tennis court, using Terraforce L11 retaining blocks and it was designed to provide spectator seating.
A weir incorporating a spillway and bridge – and providing access for farm traffic across a waterway – was constructed with Terraforce L13 blocks filled with concrete and laid on a reinforced foundation.
The judges noted the good design work in this project which has stood the test of time, and the planting in the retaining walls which is now well established.