Concrete flooring specialist contractor Twintec has recently completed a 74,500m2 project at the new £40m Constellation Europe warehouse, wine packaging and distribution centre in Avonmouth.
The floor slab is equivalent to 13 football pitches, making it the largest CAT1 floor laid in the UK this year and one of the biggest ever completed in the country.
For the new 51,000m2 main warehouse, Twintec laid a 250mm deep floor slab, reinforced with 45kg/m3 of advanced fibre technology, AFT, +1/60 steel fibres cast to a flatness tolerance of CAT1, (TR34 3rd Edition), achieving this tolerance without the need for any remedial grinding.
The contract was awarded by Fitzpatrick Contractors, on behalf of developer Goodman, to Twintec for steel fibre reinforced floors throughout the warehouse, packaging hall, tank rooms and laboratories.
When finished, the site will create the largest bonded warehouse in Europe. The adjacent and largest wine-packaging facility in the UK, handles the bottling of bulk-imported wine from South Africa, Australia and the US.
Twintec is unique among industrial flooring companies in the UK. The company specialises in achieving high tolerance floors, Superflat, CAT1, DM1, DM2, FM1 and FM2 special tolerance, without resorting to grinding the hardened slab to achieve the specified tolerance.It is part of Constellation Brands Inc, the largest wine company in the world and a leading producer and exporter of wine from the USA, Australia and New Zealand.
The steel fibre reinforced concrete was integrated into the concrete on site, under controlled conditions, using Twintec’s proprietary equipment, with concrete also mixed on site by Fitzpatricks to the contractor’s exact specification.
“The high bay warehouse was initially designed to institutional standards as this was originally a speculative build”, pointed out Darryl Eddy, Twintec’s Commercial Director. “But, tenant Constellation required bespoke elements to be introduced for their specialised use of the facility”.
“This led us to making significant changes to our floor slab designs within the overall design package, requiring close co-operation between Fitzpatrick, project managers Moseley and project engineers Stewart and Harris”.
The heavily loaded, Freeplan S, suspended floor slab, was successfully installed over a four week period. The flooring contractors’ fibre only solution is ideally suited to this type of project with 1,900m2 of slab completedeach day.
The net result for Constellation Europe will be an increase in existing warehousing capacity by 80,000 pallets, roughly 53 million bottles of wine; and when operational in 2009, bottling capacity is expected to rise to roughly 120m bottles per annum.
Constellation Europe’s brands include Hardys, Banrock Station and Stowells wine, Blackthorn, Gaymer’s and Olde English cider, Stone’s Green Ginger Wine and Babycham. The UK is its largest wine market.
The aim of the new facility is to cut shipping and reduce the mountain of imported green glass produced by British wine drinkers. Instead the wine will be brought in large 24,000 litre containers and bottled in Avonmouth before going on to be sold.
According to environmental group, Waste and Resources Action Programme, (WRAP), the UK is the largest importer of wine in the world, with more than a billion litres imported.
Bulk importation can reduce shipping costs by up to 40% and benefit the environment by using less fuel for transporting full bottles. Current estimates suggest that an additional 10 per cent switch to bulk importing means 55,000 fewer tons of glass are imported, equivalent to 3,100 container-loads.
Inaugural winners of the Concrete Society’s 2007 “Concrete Performance Award” for outstanding merit in the use of concrete.
The company headquartered in Rugby Warwickshire, has four regional offices covering the UK and employs 55 staff, including its own design team, who work closely with consulting engineers and end users to develop value engineered alternatives for any industrial flooring project.
Established in 1998, Twintec designs and produces more than 800,000m2 of steel reinforced fibre concrete industrial floors each year.