In 2021 Terraforce started the “Best Terraforce Project of the Year” Awards to recognise the excellent workmanship and manufacturing standards of our licensed partners and clients, highlighting the one that impressed us the most. So far two projects have received this award, namely the Salamanca Hospital, Salamanca, Spain, for 2021 and Silicon Oasis, Dubai, United Arab Emirates for 2022.
2021 winner, Salamanca Hospital, Spain
These four Terraforce L16 rock face finish walls – installed by Obre Tecnicas Y Medioambiente, a Spanish environmental engineering company, specialized in the construction of reinforced soil structures – cover 2300 m² surface area, with a maximum height of 7.86 m.
Miguel Seller, Civil Engineer at Obre Tecnicas Y Medioambiente says, “The main wall supports a new access road to the hospital, and in some sections special consideration had to be given to the placement of geogrids due to the presence of a large drainage pipe (2.5 m in diameter) near the visible face of the wall.”
“Another unique challenge was that we had to adapt the slope of the wall to meet another vertical wall. It was very complex from a topographical point of view. Another technical aspect to highlight is that part of the wall is located in a floodplain area of the river Tormes, so in those cases a permeable soil was used as the reinforced soil, with better geotechnical characteristics.”
Seller adds: “We used Huesker (Fortrac) geogrids with nominal tensions between 35 and 80 kN. The natural foundation ground was a slate soil, with 28º of internal friction, 10 kN / m2 of cohesion and 19.95 kN / m3 of specific weight. In the reinforced soil, we use a soil with 30º internal friction and a density of 20.00 kN / m3, of course without cohesion.
The new road, Paseo de la Transición Española, adds a length of almost 600 meters to the existing road system and provides direct access to the hospital emergency zone. It also includes another central roundabout that allows access to the new hospital complex and future parking. Landscaping and a bicycle path are still to be completed.
Without a doubt the final result is pleasing to the eye, and the additional coping blocks, the fencing along the top, as well as the large rock strip lining the foot add an eye-catching visual dimension to the wall.
Client: Salamanca City Council, Spain
Project Manager: Excelentísimo Ayuntamiento de Salamanca
Main Contractor: Ferrovial Construcción
Sub Contractor: Obre Tecnicas Y Medioambiente
Terraforce Licensed Manufacturer, Spain: Prensagra Prefabricados
2022 winner, Dubai Silicon Oasis, United Arab Emirates
These long, up to six-meter high Terraforce L16 rock face retaining walls were skilfully installed at Dubai Silicon Oasis in Dubai by Al Aamal Construction. The retaining walls were necessary due to the substantial differences in levels on site, and to provide access to a leisure area on ground level, with access stairs and ramps leading to the residences at top level.
Says Sinan Awad, Al Aamal Construction: “The site consists of set-back and vertical walls, as well as 90-degree corners that were achieved by carefully cutting the Terraforce L16 rock face blocks. For additional stability the blocks were concrete filled, reinforced with rebar and we used double block rows with the rock face finish facing outwards either side for some of the vertical walls adjoining the two grand staircases and ramps. Where the walls joined other structures, dowels were used to secure the connections. In total, 41100 Terraforce L16 and 2000 Terraforce 4×4 Step blocks were installed on site.”
Overall, the fantastic multi-level corner details, inset planter boxes, ramps with rails and grand 4×4 Step block staircases make a notable visual statement and create effective breaks in what could have been a sheer and vast, grey surface otherwise.
Client: Dubai Silicon Oasis Authority
Engineering Consultant: .KCE Consulting Engineers
Main Contractor: Water in Motion
Sub Contractor: Al Aamal Construction
Terraforce Licensed Manufacturer, Dubai: Consent Concrete Products