As part of Liverpool’s European Capital of Culture year, the Kings Waterfront has seen a dramatic development, transforming the 14.6-hectare site in to the centrepiece for the celebrations.
The location the equivalent of more than 30 football pitches provides ample space for the construction of a 10,600 capacity arena, an auditorium catering for 1,350 people and 3,725m2 multi-purpose hall. As well as this 7,000 m2 of exhibition space and 8 additional meeting rooms are to be built, supported by a 1,600 space multi-storey car park.
In addition to this, residential, hotel, office, retail and leisure developments are also taking place. The project is currently on target to be completed by the end of 2007.
One of the challenges surrounded the fact that the project had to be completed on time to avoid European wide embarrassment; this meant a waterproofing solution that would be time efficient. A further challenge centred on the concrete pour, around 8,000m3 below ground and 25,000m3 in total, with some of the foundations reaching a depth of up to 2.5m.
Kings Waterfront is almost completely surrounded by water and given the depth of some of the basement foundations, thought had to be given on how to achieve the best possible, programme efficient water tight structure.
During consultations between the Engineers’ and Grace at the design stage, the decision was made that an integral waterproofing strategy should be adopted - the Adprufe™ System was specified.
The system effectively deals with problems associated with waterproof concrete technology, such as drying shrinkage, reduced workability and reduced protection of concrete joints. The fundamental element of the system is Adprufe™ 100, an innovative liquid admixture that significantly reduces permeqbility and shrinkage of concrete.
The addition of Adprufe 100 to a concrete mix increases strength by approximately 70% after one day and by 30% after 28 days. It reduces water permeability by nearly 80% and water vapour permeability of concrete by around 50% compared to a controlled concrete of the same mix design.
Inclusion of Adprufe 100 admixture achieved an extremely smooth flow of concrete, reducing the occurrence of air pockets and removing the need to work the concrete by hand around the large number of steel foundation piles.
The foundation stage was a particularly time sensitive part of the project, where speed of construction was key due to the large volumes of concrete being poured in to the ground. An uninterrupted supply of materials was necessary to achieve this; Grace, PC Harrington and Hanson worked together to develop a technical service and logistics plan to avoid any delays.