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Piling & foundations spotlight: Football support

Piling for Poland’s new 55,000-seat National Stadium, which will host the Euro 2012 football tournament, was recently completed ahead of schedule.

Preparations for the Euro 2012 football tournament have taken a significant step forward with the recent completion of precast concrete piling for Poland’s new 55,000 capacity National Stadium. The stadium in Warsaw is being built for the European football championships, which will be jointly held with neighbouring Ukraine.

Danish civil engineering contractor Per Aarsleff’s Polish subsidiary Aarsleff had to supply and install around 9,000 large section, heavily reinforced precast concrete piles in just five months.

The piles will provide the bulk of the foundation for the stadium’s multilevel terraced seating and main support stanchions for the roof, which will include a retractable inner membrane to shelter the playing surface.

The National Stadium is being built inside the basin of the 59 year old 10th-Anniversary Stadium.

The National Stadium, designed by Warsaw based JSK Architekci in conjunction with Architekten von Gerkan, Marg & Partner from Berlin, and civil and structural consulting engineer Schlaich Bergermann & Partner from Stuttgart, is being built inside the basin of the 59 year old 10th-Anniversary Stadium.

It will have 72 backwardraking stanchions around its perimeter to support sections of fixed roof and an integral folding and retractable membrane roof.

At each main roof support stanchion a cluster of vertical and raking precast piles surrounded and complemented a radial line of 1m diameter bored piles previously installed by another contractor.

There will be nine levels in the arena, including a five-level concourse under the terraced seating for offices, conference facilities and restaurants; a further two lower levels for the players’ changing rooms and press; and two levels directly under the pitch’s playing surface for a 1,700 capacity underground car park.

The stadium is estimated to cost between £285M and £417M and is scheduled for completion at the end of 2011, ready for the opening game.

Piles were only allowed to be brought in at night because of local daytime traffic restrictions

A team of independent foundation specialists recommended 400mm² cross-section precast concrete piles for most of the stadium’s foundations which are in compacted backfill. These were supplemented with large diameter bored piling for the main columns, and hundreds of stone columns under the playing area.

The recommendations were accepted by stadium client National Centre of Sport. Main earthworks and substructure contractor Pol-Aqua awarded Aarself the £7.6M subcontract to supply and install about 9,000, 400mm² section piles. All piles were between 6m to 26m long and contained considerable additional reinforcing to take required design loads. Aarsleff started onsite at the end of October 2008.

Piles were only allowed to be brought in at night because of local daytime traffic restrictions imposed to prevent congestion on Warsaw’s busy road network during the day.

Aarsleff assembled a fleet of nine heavy-duty rigs at peak production, including two Banut 850s, a Hitachi KH125 and KH180, three Junttan PM20s and two Junttan PM25s, all fitted with 7t to 9t hammers.

Working 16 hours a day in two equal shifts, six days a week, the site team split the project into 29 separate areas, each operating like an individual contract. Each sector was enclosed in a steel sheet-piled cofferdam previously installed by Pol-Aqua. The main contractor drove an estimated 30,000m² of sheet piling.

Aarsleff successfully completed its five-month contract early in March 2009, a few days ahead of schedule.

  • National Stadium

    Piling & foundations spotlight: Football support

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